Historically, the purchasing and financial decisions for healthcare services were made at the “wholesale” level with arrangements between the payers, providers, and the employer; with the patient glaringly absent. With the introduction, and subsequent mass adoption, of High Deductible Health Plans (HDHP) the patient now has “skin in the game” assuming more of the financial responsibility for their healthcare needs.
In an earlier post, we reviewed the 5 things you need to know about the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS). The MACRA bill that introduced the MIPS program also provides incentives for participation in Alternative Payment Models (APM) in general and bonus payments to those in the most highly advance APMs. We detail the particulars of these incentives in this blog post.
It’s a new year, which means it’s time for a new deductible season. January is the time most insurance companies restart the calculation of annual deductibles for their members. This resetting of annual deductibles means a significant increase in patient responsibility for many practices. To ensure you are collecting on these patient owed balances, practices will need to employ every effort they can to get paid upfront. Are you ready for the challenge?
On April 16, 2015, the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) was signed into law. The legislation’s purpose was two-fold. It repealed the sustainable growth rate (SGR) and introduced a new quality reporting program called the Merit-Based Incentive Payments System (MIPS).
As we enter into 2016, MIPS will take on more importance as some of the requirements of the program start to take shape. Here are the five key things you need to know about MIPS.
In an effort to ensure that consumers are able to rightfully access their health information, the Health and Human Services Department released new guidance on the HIPAA Privacy Rule. The guidance covers information such as patients' general rights to their protected health information, what data is excluded from that right to access, how an individual may request access and how an entity must provide the information, among other topics.
Health systems across the U.S. are urging the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to delay implementing Meaningful Use Stage 3. In a letter sent to HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell, these organizations expressed concerns that the release of Stage 3 will hinder much needed efforts to improve technology to achieve interoperability.
The New York State Internet System for Tracking Over-Prescribing (I-STOP) Act establishes a real-time database which tracks controlled substance prescriptions issued by every doctor in the state of New York. The database allows doctors and pharmacists to have access to, and keep track of, all of the controlled substance prescriptions their patients are receiving. It is the first piece of statewide legislation enacted to help combat the rising rates of prescription drug abuse.
Speaking at the J.P. Morgan Annual Health Care Conference on Jan. 11, Acting Administrator Andy Slavitt announced that CMS is in the process of phasing out the Meaningful Use program to make way for a new, more modernized program. “The Meaningful Use program as it has existed, will now be effectively over and replaced with something better.”
The passage of the Patient Access and Medicare Protection Act was a significant win for healthcare providers stressed about being able to attest to meaningful use. The legislation, signed into law by President Obama in late December, allows eligible hospitals and eligible physicians to apply for a hardship exceptions under the 'unforeseen circumstances' category.
Higher out-of-pocket costs, new reimbursements models, and rising operating costs are just a few of the trends that will impact provider revenue cycles in 2016. These industry developments will force providers to evaluate existing Revenue Cycle Management strategies and possibly implement new technologies and workflows to simultaneously maintain financial health and address evolving consumer and regulatory demands.