MACRA Minute May 2020

New COVID-19 Clinical Trials Improvement Activity

As part of the recently announced Medicare interim final rule with comment CMS added a new high-weighted improvement activity to the 2020 QPP Improvement Activities Inventory that promotes participation in COVID-19 clinical trials and clinical reporting for COVID-19 related care. To receive credit for the new COVID-19 clinical trials (IA_ERP_3) improvement activity, MIPS-eligible clinicians must attest to participation in a COVID-19 clinical trial utilizing a drug or biological product to treat a patient with a COVID-19 infection and report their findings through clinical data repository or clinical data registry for the duration of their study. CMS has added this improvement activity to provide an opportunity for clinicians to receive credit in MIPS for the important work they are doing across the country.

Telehealth Implementation & Workflow Tips During the COVID-19 Emergency Fact Sheet (attached)

Telehealth has been implemented by many of our practices during the COVID-19 emergency so that everyone can practice social distancing and stay at home. The Medicare population, especially those with comorbid conditions, are most at risk. Telehealth provides an opportunity for patients to stay home and receive healthcare for non-emergency medical conditions. There has been a Telehealth Implementation & Workflow Tips Fact Sheet developed to help you navigate around telehealth and implement it more effectively. The fact sheet can be found here.  Services normally provided in-person can be provided via telehealth during the COVID-19 emergency. This includes common office visits, mental health counseling and preventive health screenings. View the full list of covered services.

2020 MIPS

While many of you may be busier than normal or working on the front lines right now, some of you are seeing fewer patients. This may be a good time to make sure you are prepared for MIPS reporting requirements for 2020. As of today, there have not been any changes to the 2020 MIPS reporting requirements or timeline. If you would like to meet with one of our advisors to go over 2020 requirements and make sure you are on the right track, please reach out to us at 1-844-358-4021.

PI Hardship Exception Application Is Now Open For 2020

If you have any of the following circumstances, you may qualify for a re-weighting of the Promoting Interoperability performance category (to 0%): 

  • You’re a small practice
  • You have decertified EHR technology
  • You have insufficient Internet connectivity
  • You face extreme and uncontrollable circumstances such as disaster, practice closure, severe financial distress or vendor issues
  • You lack control over the availability of CEHRT

Beginning with performance year 2020, you will need a HCQIS Access Roles and Profile (HARP) account to submit a MIPS Promoting Interoperability Performance Category Hardship Exception Application. Once you sign into QPP with your credentials, select ‘Exceptions Application’ on the left-hand navigation and then select ‘Promoting Interoperability Hardship.’ The online application can be found by logging into your HARP account here. The application will close 12/31/2020. If your application is approved, you do not have to report for the MIPS Promoting Interoperability performance category and the category will be re-weighted to 0% of your final score. The 25% weighting of the Promoting Interoperability performance category will be redistributed to another performance category (or categories) unless you choose to submit data.

CMS May LAN Webinar

Understanding How to Implement Telehealth Services: Implications for Solo and Small Group

This upcoming event will focus on understanding new flexibilities to the Quality Payment Program due to COVID-19, how to implement telehealth services, implications for billing and participation in MIPS, and tips on how to best modify your practice workflows.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020, 2:30 p.m.  – 3:30 p.m. CDT

Thursday, May 28, 2020, 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. CDT

Telligen Presentations

We have six new web presentation on the 2020 requirements for MIPS. There is a presentation for each category and in-depth look at claims-based reporting and multi-strata measures. You can view the presentations any time on our website using the links below.

2020 MIPS Quality Category Review

2020 MIPS Improvement Activity Category Review

IPS Promoting Interoperability Category Review

2020 MIPS Cost Category Review

  Submit 2020 MIPS Quality with Claims-Based Measures

2020 MIPS Multi-Strata Measures

New Resources in the QPP Resource Library

The following resources were updated or added in April

2020 MIPS Data Validation Criteria

MIPS Dear Clinician Letter

Quality Payment Program COVID-19 Response

2020 Qualified Registries

2020 Qualified Clinical Data Registries

2020 Improvement Activity Inventory

2020 and 2019 Comprehensive list of APMs

New Measures and Activities for 2020

Continuing our in-depth look at new measures and activities for the year, this month we will look at the new Quality Measure 478:

Functional Status Change for Patients with Neck Impairments

This High Priority Patient Reported Outcome Measure was developed for Orthopedic Surgeons, Physical and Occupational Therapists and Chiropractors–although it may not apply to all clinicians within these specialties. Itconsists of a patient-reported outcome measure (PROM) of risk adjusted change in functional status (FS) for patients aged 14+ with neck impairments. The change in FS is assessed using the Neck FS PROM. The measure is risk-adjusted to patient characteristics known to be associated with FS outcomes. It is used as a performance measure at the patient, individual clinician, and clinic levels to assess quality. You can find the measure specifications for measure 478 here.

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