Internists discuss the Quality Payment Program, share implementation experiences

Consolidating Medicare's quality reporting programs into a single program should make reporting less cumbersome and complicated, but it can be extremely difficult to implement a new system in practice.


ACP convened a panel yesterday to discuss the implementation of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) and the Quality Payment Program (QPP). The panel took place during a press briefing at ACP's Internal Medicine Meeting 2017.

Members of the panel were Nitin S. Damle, MD, MS, MACP, President of ACP; Shari Erickson, ACP's Vice President, Governmental Affairs and Medical Practice; and Robert McLean, MD, FACP, a practicing physician from New Haven, Conn., and the chair of ACP's Medical Practice and Quality Committee. Both Dr. Damle and Dr. McLean shared their experiences around the implementation of the QPP.

“ACP has been a leader in payment reform because we want payments that better align with value, rather than volume of care,” said Dr. Damle.

The MACRA law reforms physician payments under Medicare, moving away from a payment system based on the volume of services provided, toward a system based on value. The Quality Payment Program establishes the detailed program through which physicians will be paid under the law.

“Consolidating Medicare's reporting programs into a single program should make reporting less cumbersome and complicated,” said Dr. McLean, providing the perspective of a physician in practice. “However, it is still extremely difficult to implement a new system in your practice. This is especially true for practices that have not been as far along in the movement toward payment reform.”

This week ACP introduced a new web-based tool designed to help practices understand and implement QPP. The Quality Payment Advisor creates a practice readiness assessment report based on an individual practice's characteristics, quality measurement experience, and quality improvement activities.

“Using ACP's Quality Payment Advisor is one of the ways that we think practices should be getting ready for the QPP now,” said Ms. Erickson. “The advisor can help you select the best options for your practice and determine what pace you'll take for QPP under MACRA in 2017.”

More information about the Quality Payment Advisor and a list of the top 10 things that ACP thinks physicians should be doing for the Quality Payment Program in 2017 are available online.