The ACR is dedicated to helping its members with these issues. Although we don’t have all the answers—we’re learning as you are—rest assured that your professional association is advocating on your behalf.
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Explore This IssueJanuary 2009
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ACR staff and leadership have met with insurers to discuss—and to try to influence—their programs. The ACR has been involved in discussions with national quality organizations that develop and endorse measures. Finally, the ACR has conducted interactive, informative meetings with other professional societies dealing with similar quality issues. The ACR continues to build these relationships, which will ultimately benefit individual members in the years to come.
The ACR’s message on quality is simple: Delivering high-quality patient care is paramount to rheumatologists and rheumatology health professionals.
Although payers and others are increasingly holding providers accountable for the quality of care they deliver—a trend the ACR believes is here to stay—payers should not impose P4P or other reporting programs on providers that contain anything but a standard set of provider-approved and nationally recognized measures. Any performance-reporting program from payers should include adequate compensation to providers in exchange for their participation. The ACR’s positions on quality measurement will be outlined in a 2009 white paper, which will be posted in draft form for member comment and, once finalized, distributed to payers and other interested parties.
Introducing the ACR Rheumatology Clinical Registry
To help its members measure the quality of care they deliver—whether for reporting or their own tracking purposes—the ACR will roll out a Rheumatology Clinical Registry (RCR) in 2009.
The RCR will be offered to members at no charge and will allow them to participate in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Physician Quality Reporting Initiative through more efficient registry-based reporting rather than through claims. The RCR will be interoperable with the ACR Performance Improvement Modules, so it will be especially easy for the almost 50% of ACR members who must recertify to use both the RCR and the PIMs and only enter their data once. Finally, the ACR is working to make the RCR interoperable with electronic medical records for the benefit of those members who use them.
The ACR understands that you will have to continue to put out your daily fires, but you are invited to be proactive alongside the College in addressing the issues of the future before they become your present day crises.
Over the next few months, you will hear more about the RCR and other ways the ACR is proactively dealing with quality issues that will affect you more and more in the future.