Hospitals and providers participating in Medicare quality value-based purchasing programs received unprecedented relief on Sunday from a Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announcement that relaxes reporting requirements and extends data submission deadlines.
The action is part of the Trump Administration’s response to the coronavirus.
According to the agency, data submission for programs with deadlines in April and May are optional, giving facilities the choice to report. Data reflecting services provided between Jan. 1 and June 30, 2020 will not be factored in calculations for Medicare quality reporting and value-based programs.
CMS also added an extension for 2019 data submission to the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) to April 30, instead of Mar. 31. The Quality Payment Program (QPP) track reimburses 1.2 million clinicians based on value of care provided over volume.
The flexibility will apply to Medicare’s accountable care organization (ACO) initiative, the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP).
“In granting these exceptions and extensions, CMS is supporting clinicians fighting Coronavirus on the front lines,” CMS Administrator Seema Verma said in a news release. “The Trump Administration is cutting bureaucratic red tape so the healthcare delivery system can direct its time and resources toward caring for patients.”
In response to CMS’ announcement, the American Medical Association’s Patrice Harris praised the agency’s timely decision to ease requirements, saying the effects will be felt immediately. “Doctors don’t have much time to breathe a sigh of relief, but if they did, they would take a moment to thank CMS for this wise decision,” Harris said.
A statement issued by Harris read, in part:
In the best of times, physician practices struggle to meet all the bureaucratic demands in the Medicare program. These are not the best of times.
Along with the QPP, MIPS, and MSSP, 11 other hospital programs received relief, including optional submission of 2019 fourth quarter data and the 2020 submission deadline will not include data from Jan. through June 2020 for performance or payment programs.
This applies to the following programs:
- Ambulatory Surgical Center Quality Reporting Program
- CrownWeb National ESRD Patient Registry and Quality Measure Reporting System
- End-Stage Renal Disease Quality Incentive Program
- Hospital-Acquired Condition Reduction Program
- Hospital Inpatient Quality Reporting Program
- Hospital Outpatient Quality Reporting Program
- Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program
- Hospital Value-Based Purchasing Program
- Inpatient Psychiatric Facility Quality Reporting Program
- PPS-Exempt Cancer Hospital Quality Reporting Program
- Promoting Interoperability Program for Eligible Hospitals and Critical Access Hospitals
The same relief applies to the following post-acute care programs:
- Home Health Quality Reporting Program
- Hospice Quality Reporting Program
- Inpatient Rehabilitation Facility Quality Reporting Program
- Long Term Care Hospital Quality Reporting Program
- Skilled Nursing Facility Quality Reporting Program
- Skilled Nursing Facility Value-Based Purchasing Program
Also take a look at RevCycle Intelligence.
And visit the CMS site for the news release.