In the past year or so, medical professionals and treatment specialists have been encouraging the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to provide a high level of simplicity, improved flexibility, and a strong sense of stability when it comes to the Medicare Quality Payment Program (QPP). Recently, the proposed rule for the upcoming second year of this particular program was made public. Fortunately, there are 3 unique characteristics of the program that have practitioners highly excited. In this brief guide, we will review these.

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Small-Practice Accommodations

One of the first characteristics that are deemed highly positive among practitioners is the fact that the proposed rule offers accommodations to small practices. This originates with the first year being identified as a “transitional” phase and provides small practices with the ability to choose how they want to participate. Next, it offers practices with 200 or less Medicare patients to be exempt from the MIPS that are currently in place. As a result, the 2020 adjustments for these practices will be identified as either “neutral” or “positive”.

EHR Flexibility

The next characteristic of the proposed rule that is deemed “positive” is the fact that practitioners will have a higher level of flexibility, as it pertains to their EHRs. In the year of 2018, practitioners will be able to use the 2014-based EHRs or the 2015-based EHRs without experiencing any complications or penalties. If practitioners elect to use the 2015 version of the EHRs, they will be provided with extra credits.

Legacy Program Replacements

The 3rd positive characteristic of the proposed rule for 2018 allows for the replacement of many legacy programs. Examples include the Quality Reporting System for Physicians, the electronic health record system referred to as “Meaningful Use”, and the payment modifier for the value-based networks. As a result of this, there is also going to be a tremendous focus on securing the health-related information of patients and the utilization of the CEHRT (certified EHR technology system), to enhance engagement among patients, as well as the reporting procedures for clinical data.

The proposed rule for 2018 comes with many advantages to practitioners. While it is true that there are some kinks to be cleared with the system, it is also true that many improvements have been made.

For more information on the 2018 proposed rule and all of the aspects of the said rule, you may visit our blog today at: http://coloradophysicaltherapynetwork.com/blog/