PQRS: Are You In or Are You Out?

pqrsPQRS is yet another acronym that doctors are hearing a lot lately; to my surprise, however, I see that most doctors either opt out because of how complicated it is, or think they are already reporting on it but are not. Regardless of which side of the fence you are on, you are probably already collecting the information required. PQRS stands for the Physician Quality Reporting System, and it utilizes incentive payments (as well as penalties) to promote reporting of quality information measures important to Medicare. Some physicians feel that half a percent incentive is not worth the hassle of collecting and reporting on this data, but don’t forget about the future 1-1/2% percent penalty for not reporting on it. If 2% of Medicare revenue doesn’t interest you, what about when the commercial carriers get on board and the potential incentives are significantly higher? It’s easier to get started now and not think that 2% is not worth losing sleep over.

The good news is that most physicians are already collecting the right data; the other side of the coin is, how can you report on that data? Wouldn’t it be nice if the software could send this data on your behalf? Depending on which software you are using, your wish could come true. For example, at Microwize, we have a plug-in that connects to Medisoft and Lytec that can send the reports for you, while displaying the measures information on a dashboard for your internal use and knowledge. Using this information to improve your outcomes in the future is just as important to Medicare, your patients, and your practice.

“As of January 1, 2017, the PQRS program has been merged with Meaningful Use into the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), established by the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA).  The performance under the MIPS program is measured by 4 categories – quality, improvement activities, Promoting Interoperability, and cost.  The quality measures under the PQRS program have been repurposed or replaced by new ones and became the quality category of the MIPS program.