The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) is working rapidly to update policies and allow healthcare providers to flexibly apply best practices in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Programs such as Hospitals without Walls and the existing Patients over Paperwork have been deployed. Removal of barriers have resulted in exponential growth of telehealth and remote patient monitoring. Advanced payments to healthcare providers are being provided to counter the effects of changing patterns of healthcare use, reduction in elective procedure, increase in ICU utilization and other ongoing unanticipated changes.
The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is paying for a wider range of telemedicine services during the coronavirus pandemic as of March 6, 2020. These remote medical services are available for all patients, not just those receiving coronavirus treatment. Telehealth services now include remote patient monitoring for both chronic and acute conditions, and allow doctors to collect Medicare payments for making phone calls to patients.
There is a tsunami of information coming at us all about COVID-19, the impact to healthcare practices, the business climate, and the federal government response. On Friday, we saw monumental legislative changes. I haven't read the entire 887 page document yet, but here are a couple of the best recaps I've seen.
Over the last month, there’s been a lot of discussion around the 2020 Medicare Final Rule updates for the QPP and MIPS here at Healthmonix and with our partners and clients. While the last three years of the program were about getting healthcare providers up-to-speed with the program, now the focus is on challenging providers to adhere to tougher rules. High performers will reap significant rewards, others will see increasing downside.
(Malvern, Pennsylvania) - Healthmonix, the country’s largest provider of quality and MIPS reporting and healthcare data analytics, has announced a national distribution partnership with ChartSpan, the market-leading vendor in chronic care management (CCM) services.
When I was in graduate school, I was the only woman in the department of Computer and Electrical Engineering. At my first job, at an engineering company, out of perhaps 300 engineers, there were 3 women. We became close and were recruited to the company volleyball team because it needed to be co-ed in order to compete in the league. I can go on about the myriad of times I was the only woman in a meeting, group, or department.
It felt as if the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) Annual Conference, which we have attended for years, was smaller this year. The hall was down 10 percent, and the foot traffic was slower. Regardless, we left with plenty of insights into the state of the industry. Here are some of the highlights of what we learned:
For many years now, Healthmonix has supported clients who engage with the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) on a variety of levels, in terms of the maturity of their process. At the lowest level—let’s call it Level 0—we have clients that come to us because they just want to report and avoid a penalty. Just beyond that, at Level 1, are those clients that seek an incentive.
Now, as we continue to settle into the brave new world of value based payments, we have noticed that our clients at Level 1 are starting to get comfortable. Clearly they are investing time and effort into the process, but with incentives still relatively small, MIPS can unfortunately seem more like an annoyance than an opportunity, and it can be hard to see beyond the immediate requirements.
But we’re thinking bigger, and we want you to do the same.
In last week’s blog, Point: The Promise of Blockchain, we discussed some of the exciting features of blockchain technology as it begins to take hold of the healthcare IT field. This week, we’re looking at the other side of the coin by outlining some of the pitfalls related to this technology.