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Act now to avoid Medicare penalties in 2015



March 15, 2013
Area(s) of Interest: Payor Contracting Payor Issues and Reimbursement Practice Management 

Over the past six years, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has launched a number of initiatives that offer physicians the opportunity to increase their net revenue by participating in quality reporting programs. Until now, most of these programs have been voluntary and physicians have received bonuses for participating. That's about to change. Failure to participate now means physicians could face significant penalties.


The American Academy of Family Physicians estimates that participating in these initiatives in 2013, rather than waiting until 2014, could save a physician $19,000 in avoided penalties.


To help physicians understand the bonuses and penalties associated with key Medicare initiatives, the California Medical Association (CMA) will be hosting a free webinar for members ($99 for nonmembers), "Quality Reporting Programs: What Physicians Need to Know and Do Now to Improve Care and Avoid Penalties."


During the April 9 webinar, participants will learn directly from CMS Region 9 Chief Medical Officer, Betsy L. Thompson, M.D., about the major quality reporting and e-health incentive programs currently underway for eligible professionals. The session will cover the basics of the Physician Quality Reporting System, the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Records Incentive Programs, the Medicare E-Prescribing Incentive Program and the new value-based payment modifier. The content will be geared toward physicians, nurse practitioners and physician assistants and what they need to know, although other health care professionals and medical office staff are welcome to attend.


Each of these programs has specific deadlines and reporting requirements, some of which are overlapping, and are not always simple to understand. CMA's webinar will give physicians the information they need to successfully participate in each program. During the webinar, Dr. Thompson will help participants understand which programs they are eligible for, the associated incentives and penalties for each program, and the deadlines and requirements for participation.


The webinar will be presented on Tuesday, April 9, at two convenient times: 12:15 to 1:45 p.m. and again from 6 to 7:30 p.m Participation is free for CMA members. Nonmembers can register for $99.


For more information, or to register, see CMA's event calendar.


Contact: CMA's member service center, (800) 786-4262 or memberservice@cmadocs.org.

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