E/M payment changes should not undervalue care
CMS's proposed changes to payments for evaluation and management (E/M) codes do not appropriately recognize the value of cognitive care required to treat complex patients, and the proposal should not be implemented, ACP said in a letter to the agency.
The changes are part of the proposed 2019 Medicare Fee Schedule (MFS) and Quality Payment Program (QPP) rules. ACP supports the proposal to reduce the documentation burden for E/M services but said those improvements should not be contingent on acceptance of the payment changes, and CMS should take the time to work with physicians to “get it right,” rather than hastily imposing an arbitrary deadline.
ACP's comments were part of a letter submitted Sept. 10 to CMS Administrator Seema Verma and signed by Jacqueline Fincher, MD, MACP, chair of ACP's Medical Practice and Quality Committee.
Performance measures for preventive care analyzed
ACP's Performance Measurement Committee has released an analysis of 28 performance measures for preventive care identified from the websites of the National Quality Forum (NQF) and the CMS Quality Payment Program. The analysis found that 21% of measures were valid, 26% were not valid, and 43% were of uncertain validity. ACP performed its analysis using its measure review criteria (previously published by the New England Journal of Medicine on April 18). Find other meaningful performance measure recommendations from ACP.
Introducing “Annals On Call”
Annals of Internal Medicine has launched a new podcast series, “Annals On Call,” hosted by Robert Centor, MD, MACP. During each episode, Dr. Centor welcomes guest experts to discuss and debate a clinically influential article published in Annals. Episodes include an opportunity to earn CME credits and MOC points. Podcasts are available on the Annals website and on other podcast platforms.
ACP partners with Bedside Rounds podcast
ACP has partnered with Bedside Rounds, a podcast on the history of medicine and how it affects our society and culture. After listening to each episode, ACP members can claim CME credit and MOC points. Bedside Rounds is also available on iTunes and other podcast platforms.
Team-based care and outcomes, well-being
“Implementing Optimal Team-Based Care to Reduce Clinician Burnout,” a paper coauthored by Cynthia D. Smith, MD, FACP, ACP's Vice President for Clinical Programs, and published by the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), details how team-based health care can improve patient outcomes, care efficiency, and clinician satisfaction.
ACP offers resources on well-being through its Physician Well-being & Professional Satisfaction initiative, and is an active participant in NAM's Action Collaborative on Clinician Well-Being and Resilience. ACP's Patients Before Paperwork initiative addresses systems challenges and seeks to reduce excessive administrative burdens.
ICYMI: Highlights from ACP Internist Weekly
- U.S. government agencies issue guidance on nerve agent exposures. “Nerve Agent Information for Emergency Medical Services and Hospitals” is a refresher on standard protocols for nerve agent exposures, as well as an aid to distinguishing nerve agent exposure from opioid overdose. Read the ACP Internist Weekly summary.
- Annual screening for urinary incontinence recommended for all women. Screening ideally should assess whether urinary incontinence affects activities and quality of life, and women should then be referred for further evaluation and treatment if needed, the Women's Preventive Services Initiative said. The recommendation was published Aug. 14 by Annals of Internal Medicine and is available to ACP members and Annals subscribers online. Read the ACP Internist Weekly summary.