Fee Schedule Reaction, New 'Pick Your Pace' for CMS Reporting, Advocacy in Action

If the email below is not displayed correctly on your smartphone or email viewer, click here.
To ensure that you always receive our newsletter, please add the e-mail address "ACPAdvocate@healthbanks.com" to your address book.
September 23, 2016

Welcome to The ACP Advocate,

Today’s first article provides a summary of ACP’s comments in support of proposals made by CMS to improve the final Medicare Physician Fee Schedule. The article includes ACP recommendations to improve payment for internists' services, especially related to care of patients with chronic illnesses.

Our second article in this issue takes a look at the recent announcement by CMS acting administrator Andy Slavitt, giving physicians more flexible options to report data to Medicare next year under the new Quality Payment Program created by the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA). Consistent with ACP's recommendations, CMS will allow physicians to “Pick Your Pace” for quality reporting. This is particularly good news for physicians in small practices.

Finally, our third article looks at advocacy in action, featuring an ACP member who is working directly with his Congressional representative on prescription drug pricing. It’s an inspiring look at how one person can make a difference on a critical issue.

Our next ACP Advocate newsletter will be distributed on Oct. 7. It’s slated to look at the controversy surrounding ACA markets.

For more coverage of what's happening in Washington, take a look at my award-winning blog, The ACP Advocate Blog by Bob Doherty. You can also follow me on Twitter @BobDohertyACP.

As always, please send your feedback and suggestions on this newsletter to: TheACPAdvocate@acponline.org.

Yours truly,

Bob Doherty
Senior Vice President
Governmental Affairs and Public Policy
American College of Physicians


In the news
» Proposed Changes to Medicare Fees Merit Mostly Positive Reaction From ACP

Easing of IT requirements and expansion of chronic care coverage are among revisions on tap for 2017

In about a month, Medicare will finalize its Physician Fee Schedule for next year, and the changes proposed so far generally look good, according to the American College of Physicians.

"The college ... (read more)

» Physicians Can Pick Their Pace for Reporting Medicare Data, CMS says

New stance offers options during ramp-up to MACRA implementation

Medicare is offering physicians something new in the reporting of data next year: flexibility.

In essence, physicians will be able to pick the level and pace at which they start participating in Me... (read more)

» Advocacy in Action: Tackling Pharmaceutical Issues Head-On

ACP member shares the physician's perspective at legislative forum in Texas

Dr. Fred Campbell has spent way too much time trying to convince patients to take his advice about the potential benefits and risks of certain prescription medications.

As he described it, patients... (read more)

About this newsletter
The ACP Advocate is an e-newsletter, edited by the College's Washington, DC governmental affairs division, created to provide you, our members, with succinct news about public policy issues affecting internal medicine and patient care. To learn more about ACP's Advocacy and to access the ACP Advocate archives, go to www.acponline.org/advocacy.
In this issue
» Proposed Changes to Medicare Fees Merit Mostly Positive Reaction From ACP
» Physicians Can Pick Their Pace for Reporting Medicare Data, CMS says
» Advocacy in Action: Tackling Pharmaceutical Issues Head-On

In focus
» ACP recognition of opioid issue includes advocacy... and more
Last week, President Obama signed a proclamation marking Prescription Opioid and Heroin Epidemic Awareness Week, 2016. While ACP support of the proclamation focuses recognition of the issue on advocacy, ACP also provides education on the subject via this CME course for members https://www.acponline.org/meetings-courses/focused-topics/safe-opioid-prescribing and, this Quality Improvement initiative https://www.acponline.org/practice-resources/quality-improvement/chronic-pain-and-safe-opioid-prescribing.
» ICD-10 coding update: Effective in one week
In just another week, on Oct. 1, 2016, claims must include ICD-10-CM codes to the highest level of specificity possible based on documentation. The one-year contingency period, during which clinicians were not penalized for billing non-specific codes (when a more specific code is available), will end on the last day of September. See page 8 (#25) of the linked Q&A on ICD-10 from CMS.

If you don't want to receive this newsletter anymore, unsubscribe here.

© Copyright 2016 American College of Physicians. All rights reserved.
Washington Office | 25 Massachusetts Ave., NW | Washington, DC 20001-7401 | Phone: (800) 338-2746

Featuring articles produced by HealthDay's Custom Content Division

Delivered by HEALTHBANKS, INC. • 15 New England Executive Park • Burlington, MA 01803