With the recent changes in the PQRS rule, many specialty providers are struggling to find the best way to comply with the program. There are several ways to report podiatry PQRS data, but if you are an EHR user then we believe the EHR method is the most efficient way. Historically foot and ankle specialists were encouraged to use the claim method, but moving forward we think the EHR method is better because of the alignment of the Meaningful Use and PQRS 2014 Clinical Quality Measures (CQMs).
Important Facts about Podiatry PQRS 2014 and Meaningful Use
- There are 64 measures that are included in the Meaningful Use and PQRS EHR program for years 2014-2016
- Providers are required to report 9 CQMs and they can be the same for both programs
- There are many more measures for PQRS that are not part of the EHR program
- Reporting PQRS measures that are outside of the 64 approved EHR program measures does not help meet the Meaningful Use 2014-2016 CQM requirement
- Aligning your CQMs for both programs reduces the total number of CQMs you need to report to CMS
- This year, PQRS reporting is for one year and Meaningful Use is 3 months
- Next year PQRS and Meaningful Use reporting is for a full year for both programs
- Only vendors that are Meaningful Use 2014 certified can facilitate reporting via the EHR method
Many specialists, including podiatrists, believe it is hard to find 9 of the 64 measures that may apply to their specialty via the EHR method. We believe that there are at least 9 measures that podiatrists can report successfully – and by successfully, we mean: Meet the threshold for each program in such a way that the provider will not be excluded from incentive payment or penalized in either program.
For PQRS, program providers must report measures where the denominator and numerator for each measure is at least one.
About the denominator: For the CQMs we outline in this document, you need to have at least one diabetic patient and at least one patient that is 65 years or older. Every podiatrist will have patients that meet the denominator.
With regard to recording the numerator, most of the measures are easily met by adding a few new fields to your practice’s intake form and training your staff to assist in the collection and recording of certain data in the EHR. Some measures require physician attention, but they are not time-consuming tasks. We believe it is best for the provider to record as many numerator values as possible, but the provider does not need to be perfect since meeting the threshold equals a numerator of just 1 or greater.
EHR vendors that are Meaningful Use 2014 certified are able to create a CMS compliant file called a QRDA file that providers are able to upload to CMS in early 2015.
Conclusion for EHR Users:
- With the alignment of the Meaningful Use and PQRS programs, it makes sense to report via the EHR method
- Be sure your vendor is Meaningful Use 2014 certified
- Prepare to make minor workflow changes and train your staff to collect the data required to meet at least 9 of the CQMs we recommend (download of recommended CQMs below)
- At the end of the year, have your vendor prepare a CMS-compliant file suitable for upload to CMS in 2015
- Download and review the podiatry PQRS measures that may fit best for your podiatry practice
Download Podiatry PQRS Measures
Download Patient Instruction Support Documents for Podiatry PQRS Measures
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