The Healthmonix Advisor

Lauren Patrick

Lauren is the founder and president of Healthmonix. She brings a vision of assisting organizations and providers in improving the quality of healthcare through innovative approaches. Lauren has a background as a consultant at Ernst and Young and holds a Master’s Degree in Computer Engineering. She loves to bike and kayak!
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Recent Posts

Interested in providing feedback to CMS about the burden that MIPS places on your practice?

Posted by Lauren Patrick on February 25, 2018

Apply to help CMS in its new study, running from April 2018 through March 2019, and make your voice heard.

CMS is looking for groups and individuals that are eligilbe for MIPS to help study the burden that the MIPS program, particularly the Quality component, place on eligible clinicians. In return, successful participants will receive full credit for the Improvement Activity component of MIPS this year (2018).

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Topics: MACRA and MIPS, MIPS Quality Component, MIPS, MACRA

Improvement Provision for Quality and Cost Measures

Posted by Lauren Patrick on February 22, 2018

In year two of MIPS and beyond, CMS is including an Improvement score for Quality and Cost measures. This week we take a deep dive into what this score entails, as well as what you need to know to keep yours ahead of the curve.

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Topics: Quality Performance Category, MIPS, Cost Performance Category

The Case For Reporting More Than The Minimum

Posted by Lauren Patrick on February 13, 2018
There’s no doubt that MIPS involves a learning curve. The program’s rules can be complex and can require cumbersome initial investments of time and money, leading many doctors to opt for reporting in “easy mode” during the transition years to avoid the hassle. And for 2017, easy mode is about as easy as it gets.
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Topics: MIPS

4 Tips To Reduce Hospital Readmission Rates

Posted by Lauren Patrick on January 25, 2018

 

Hospital readmissions can be bad news for patients, but they can also be bad news for a hospital’s bottom line. Readmissions cost $41.3 billion overall, a majority of whichabout $26 billion annuallyis paid by Medicare. Moreover, as much as $17 billion of Medicare-paid readmissions are considered to be avoidable.

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Topics: Readmissions, Value-Based Care

New Interview Question: "What’s Your MIPS Score?"

Posted by Lauren Patrick on January 18, 2018

 

Yes, it may be that important. My prediction is that practices, networks, and health systems will start to pay more attention to MIPS scores during the process of hiring new clinicians. In fact, at Healthmonix we have already been asked about this several times in 2017.

But why would they care? If a clinician moves to a new practice, wouldn’t they receive the score, and adjustment, for that new practice? Unfortunately for clinicians looking to start fresh, the answer is no.

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CMS Launches 'Patients Over Paperwork' Initiative

Posted by Lauren Patrick on January 11, 2018

In late October, CMS launched a new initiative, Patients Over Paperwork, targeted to reduce unproductive regulatory burdens on health care providers and increase efficiency. CMS Administrator Seema Verma announced the initiative during a stakeholder meeting with more than 30 industry groups.

The initiative is potentially wide reaching, affecting a broad range of regulations surrounding practices such as prior authorizations, documentation of evaluation and management codes, OIG audits, and EHR requirements.

According to Verma, this has already touched the QPP final rule for 2018. As an outcome of this initiative, the QPP final rule includes policies that exclude individual MIPS eligible clinicians with less than or equal to $90,000 in Part B allowed charges or less than or equal to 200 Part B beneficiaries.

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The Many MIPS Submission Choices: A Guide for 2017

Posted by Lauren Patrick on January 9, 2018

Depending on your performance and your desire to maximize your reimbursement in 2019 (who doesn’t want more revenue?), there are a number of options available in final submission of your MIPS data to CMS. All of these choices can seem overwhelming, but Healthmonix is here to help! Read on to find out what choices you'll face and how to make the best ones for your practice.

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CMS Launches 'Meaningful Measures' Initiative

Posted by Lauren Patrick on January 4, 2018

On October 30, CMS Administrator Seema Verma announced the Meaningful Measures initiative, which is intended to streamline quality reporting. This initiative is meant to address common criticisms of today’s performance measures, including their excessive focus on evaluating processes and the lack of alignment between programs. According to Verma, “Meaningful Measures will involve only assessing those core issues that are the most vital to providing high-quality care and improving patient outcomes.”

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How Your MIPS Score Will Follow You (Even If You Leave Your Practice)

Posted by Lauren Patrick on December 28, 2017
More and more doctors are leaving their practices. According to The Physicians Foundation , only a third currently identify as independent practice owners or partners; in 2012, this number was closer to 50%. While some of this shift can be attributed to retirement and career change, many are instead leaving their private practices in order to become employees of hospital-owned practices and multi-specialty clinics. The number of practices owned by hospitals and health systems has risen 86% between 2012 and 2015, and the number of U.S. physicians employed by hospitals and health systems has increased 50% in that same period.
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What The Individual Mandate Repeal Means For Your Premiums

Posted by Lauren Patrick on December 22, 2017

Today the president signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, a bill which will have far-reaching implications for tax reform, into law. But the legislation may also affect the health insurance market through its elimination of the ACA individual mandate. In this week’s blog we look in-depth at what the repeal of the individual mandate entails, as well as its potential effect on the insurance marketplace.

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