Quality Payment Program Year 2 Policies are Gradually Preparing Clinicians for Full Implementation
Increasing Flexibility and Reducing Burdens
CMS recently finalized policies for Year 2 of the Quality Payment Program to further reduce your burden and offer more ways to participate successfully. They are keeping many of the transition year policies and making some minor changes.
- Download the Quality Payment Program final rule with comments from the Federal Register
- Download an overview of the final rule with comment
- Download an executive summary of the rule
Major highlights include:
- Weighting the MIPS Cost performance category to 10 percent of your total MIPS final score and the Quality performance category to 50 percent.
- Raising the MIPS performance threshold to 15 points in Year 2 (from 3 points in the transition year).
- Allowing the use of 2014 Edition and/or 2015 Certified Electronic Health Record Technology (CEHRT) in Year 2 for the Advancing Care Information performance category and giving a bonus for using only 2015 CEHRT.
- Awarding up to 5 bonus points on your MIPS final score for treatment of complex patients.
- Automatically weighting the Quality, Advancing Care Information and Improvement Activities performance categories at 0 percent of the MIPS final score for clinicians impacted by Hurricanes Irma, Harvey and Maria and other natural disasters.
- Adding 5 bonus points to the MIPS final scores of small practices.
- Adding Virtual Groups as a participation option for MIPS.
- Issuing an interim final rule with comment for extreme and uncontrollable circumstances where clinicians can be automatically exempt from these categories in the transition year without submitting a hardship exception application (note that Cost has a 0 percent weight in the transition year) if they were have been affected by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, which occurred during the 2017 MIPS performance period.
- Decreasing the number of doctors and clinicians required to participate as a way to provide further flexibility by excluding individual MIPS eligible clinicians or groups with ≤$90,000 in Part B allowed charges or ≤200 Medicare Part B beneficiaries.
- Providing more detail on how eligible clinicians participating in selected APMs (known as MIPS APMs) will be assessed under the APM scoring standard.
- Creating additional flexibilities and pathways to allow clinicians to be successful under the All Payer Combination Option. This option will be available beginning in performance year 2019.
If you have questions or need assistance, we can help. The Great Plains QIN Quality Payment Program Service Center site houses key resources to better your understanding of the program, contact information for experts that can answer your questions and several avenues in getting technical support – through an email ticketing system, by phone or live chat. Visit our site or contact a member of our team today to get the answers and assistance you need (free of charge).