Paul Drey

MACRA’S QUALITY PAYMENT PROGRAM HAS GONE LIVE – ACTION REQUIRED IN 2017 TO AVOID PART B PAYMENT REDUCTIONS IN 2019 – QPP BASICS TO KNOW IN GETTING STARTED A new Congress has convened, a new administration is at the helm, and repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is on the docket, an action of consequence for, among other things, the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP), primary care medical homes, and other Medicare-developed alternative payment…
Medicare/Medicaid Reform and ACA Repeal on the Horizon, MACRA Moves Forward for Now The new administration’s agenda for health care may have come into clearer focus with President-Elect Donald Trump’s nomination of House Representative Tom Price, MD, a Republican from Georgia, as Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Seema Verma, MPH, as CMS Administrator. The American Medical Association (AMA) released a statement of strong support for Congressman Price, encouraging a swift confirmation vote.…
QRUR Informal Review Also Available. Physicians and other eligible professionals and practices who failed to meet criteria for satisfactory PQRS reporting in calendar year (CY) 2015 now face a negative 2% adjustment in Medicare Part B payments for CY 2017. Physicians who believe CMS has inappropriately determined that a negative PQRS payment adjustment applies to them have until November 30* to request an informal review.  CMS set forth the following instructions for requesting an informal…
On October 14, 2016, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released its final rule implementing the new Quality Payment Program for physicians in lieu of the repealed sustainable growth rate factor (SGR). Rather than facing substantial annual reductions in Medicare payment fees as a result of the SGR, physicians now have two interrelated pathways to earn quality-based, cost efficient incentive payments under Medicare:  the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) or Advanced Alternative Payment…
Physicians subject to the Rule must meet notice and posting obligations by October 16, 2016. The federal Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through its Office for Civil Rights (OCR), has published its final Rule implementing Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), 42 U.S.C. 18116, prohibiting discrimination in health care programs and activities. The new Rule, like Section 1557, specifically focuses its prohibitions and requirements on four already existing federal nondiscrimination laws:…
CMS proposed rule details Medicare’s new physician “Quality Payment Program” Reporting under new measures slated to begin in 2017 The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the federal agency responsible for Medicare payment to physicians, released a proposed rule on April 27, 2016, setting forth key provisions of its Quality Payment Program for physicians, implementing key provisions in the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA). MACRA repealed the Sustainable Growth Rate…
2016 Amendments Permit Disclosure for Care Coordination Only Under State Law One of the more challenging aspects of medical records management are federal and state legalities around release of substance abuse and mental health patient information. This year, the Iowa General Assembly passed legislation, Senate File 2144, to permit disclosure of otherwise confidential behavioral health information under Iowa law for care coordination purposes. SF 2144 was signed by Governor Branstad on April 6 and became…
Even so, employers are best protected in giving statutory notice and medical providers are best protected in assuring that continued care remains authorized. Notification requirements imposed by Iowa’s workers’ compensation law upon employers authorizing care for an injured employee took center stage in a recent decision of the Iowa Supreme Court. In that case, Ramirez-Trujillo v Quality Egg, L.L.C., et. al. (No. 14-0640, filed April 15, 2016), an employee suffered back injuries from a…
Brick Gentry’s president Paul Drey twice addresses the Iowa Medical Society (IMS) at its Annual Conference in Coralville, Iowa this month. “Protect Yourself: The Basics of Employment Contracts,” illuminates considerations for physician employment agreements. The program synopsis raises important questions:  “The work does not end once you verbally accept a position. But does the offer meet your needs? Will this contract limit your practice options in the future? Find out answers to these questions…
HIPAA AND FEES FOR MEDICAL RECORDS – Updated OCR guidance sets limits. Physicians and other HIPAA covered entity providers are familiar with HIPAA’s rule on fees that may be charged when individuals request copies of their medical records. The federal Office of Civil Rights (OCR), the enforcement agency for the HIPAA Privacy Rule, recently released updated guidance directives on when fees may be imposed and limitations on costs that may be included in assessing such…