As much of healthcare moves away from fee-for-service and toward value-based payment, rheumatologists should have an active role in the quality measurements used to improve patient care and determine reimbursements.
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On Friday, Nov. 6, in the ACR Convergence session Everything I Do Counts: Quality of Care in Rheumatology, a panel of rheumatologists will provide updates on quality measure requirements of the Medicare Access & CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) and new quality measures developed through the ACR. The session will include experts in government policy and payments, quality improvement and quality measure development, says Gabriela Schmajuk, MD, chief of rheumatology, San Francisco VA Health Care System, and associate professor, Division of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine, UC San Francisco.
“It is very important for the rheumatologists to understand MACRA’s quality measure requirements and how to best implement these quality measures in their practices,” says Puneet Bajaj, MD, MPH, associate chief quality officer, Southwestern Health Resources, and assistant professor, Division of Rheumatic Diseases, UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas.
The session will provide an inside look at how ACR’s volunteer rheumatologists are working to make Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) quality measures that work for ACR members, says Angus B. Worthing, MD, FACP, FACR, rheumatologist at Arthritis & Rheumatism Associates and clinical assistant professor of medicine, Georgetown University Medical Center, both in Washington, D.C.
The speakers will provide a review of how MACRA got started and changes to MIPS due to COVID-19. Session leaders will update attendees on the ACR’s progress in improving quality measurement in rheumatology. “All of our measures to date have focused on the processes of care as opposed to patient outcomes, such as disease activity and functional status,” Dr. Schmajuk says. Newer efforts include high-priority measures focused on patient safety and patient-reported outcomes, she says.
Another example of the ACR’s efforts include the establishment of the Rheumatology Informatics System for Effectiveness (RISE) Registry, which is the largest electronic health record-enabled rheumatology registry in the U.S., Dr. Bajaj says. The RISE Registry can help clinicians make practice improvements, earn CME/MOC credits and meet MIPS improvement activity requirements.
The session will conclude with a practical approach to apply quality measures in the clinic. For instance, session leaders will discuss plan-do-study-act cycles, a process used to structure quality improvement projects, and share project examples that can be applied in any clinic, Dr. Schmajuk says.
Everything I Do Counts: Quality of Care in Rheumatology will be held Friday, Nov. 6, from 5:15–6 p.m. EST. Linda Russell, MD, will moderate the session.