Does your medical practice service patients covered by Medicare Part B? If so, you are automatically part of MIPS: Medicare’s Merit-based Incentive Payments System. How MIPS affects you depends on how you manage the care of your Medicare patients, and how compliant you are with specific reporting standards.

They classify the highest level of MIPS achievement as an Exceptional Performer. Exceptional Performers receive additional financial incentives for achieving high MIPS scores and continually improving their standards of patient care. Happe-Analytics can be your path to achieving this status and qualifying for the added incentives that comes with Exceptional Performer status.

What is Happe-Analytics?

Most of the mandated reporting for MIPS comprises data that is extracted from your patient EHR system. However, for data to be accurate, you must set up your EHR correctly. Your practice workflows, data input methods, and documentation must align for your data to be trustworthy and current at each collection point.

Tangible Solutions’ Happe-Analytics software measures your quality outcomes, delivers a clear, comprehensive evaluation of your MIPS score, and helps you perfect your data reporting. When you select Happe-Analytics as your MIPS solution, you gain deep visibility into each performance category, and can easily identify areas ripe for improvement at both a practice-wide and practitioner-specific level.

The Happe-Analytics process

First, we complete a deep dive into your practice, identifying how your practice collects, inputs and stores your patient data. We meet and collaborate closely with your practice staff and physicians, to evaluate workflows, documentation and data input methods.

Since Happe-Analytics works with multiple EHR systems, we can customize your solution and recommend input changes that will increase your retrievable data for reporting. This refined data becomes your trusted point of reference for MIPS reporting, and will be the baseline you can use to improve your score and maximize your positive adjustment.

Practices and practitioners who use the Happe-Analytics reporting system have an improved chance at maximum positive adjustments in the years ahead; in fact, all those currently using Happe-Analytics are on track to become Exceptional Performers, and receiving the highest incentives for quality patient care.

Categories that affect Exceptional Performance status

A points system determines the impact of MIPS on your revenues. If you didn’t know about MIPS, or haven’t been taking part in mandated data reporting, you have probably been losing money each year since the program began implementing negative and positive financial adjustments.

According to the Quality Payment Program website, by collecting and reporting data based on measures of how you provide care, and continually improving your care across four key performance categories, you can avoid penalties and achieve scores that qualify you for financial rewards. The four categories include:

  1. Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS, measures quality of care)
  2. Promoting Interoperability (PI, measures use of electronic health records)
  3. Value-Based Payment Modifier (VBPM, measures cost of care)
  4. Improvement activities (IA, measures implementation of activities to improve care)

Those who maintain the highest level of excellence achieve Exceptional Performer Status. This is the top ranking for the MIPS program, and should be the goal of every participating practice as participants at this level are eligible for the largest MIPS incentives.

Happe-Analytics helps providers and practices achieve better reporting, and highlight areas of patient care and practice administration that need improvement. With Happe-Analytics on your side, you can raise your scores year over year, reaching Exceptional Performer Status and receiving the highest possible incentives.

Scoring, payment adjustments and Exceptional Performer bonuses

Eligible clinician (EC) scoring changes slightly every year. According to the Journal of the American Health Information Management Association, for the year 2020, scores were weighted accordingly:

  • Quality (45%)
  • Promoting Interoperability (25%)
  • Cost (15%)
  • Improvement Activities (15%)

Scores range from 0 to 100. ECs receive payment adjustments that are negative, neutral or positive. In 2021, MIPS-eligible clinicians will need to have an MIPS score of at least 60 points to avoid a penalty of up to 9% in 2023, and the Exceptional Performance bonus threshold is 85 points. They release the scores the year after submission, and apply the payment adjustments the year after that (ECs evaluated in 2021 will receive their scores in 2022, and they will apply the payment adjustments in 2023).

Negative and positive adjustments applied to your practice are found on the annual Explanation of Benefits (EOB.) If you haven’t been receiving the maximum positive adjustment for exceptional performance, you need to identify where your practice is falling short and why.

Happe-Analytics can help you improve your score so that you can receive the Exceptional Performance bonus each year for your practice’s commitment to patient care and high level reporting. One of our customers increased their MIPS score from 68 to 99.8 in 2020, elevating them in the space of just one year from a score barely high enough to escape negative impact to one qualifying for Exceptional Performer Status and the accompanying positive adjustment.

MIPS exemptions

Alternative Payment Models (APMs) may exempt a practitioner or practice from MIPS, relieving them of the concerns over a negative adjustment, but these ECs will also be ineligible for a MIPS positive adjustment. Reporting is still required, although participation thresholds are lower. Other exemptions from MIPS include new Medicare enrolled clinicians, who are exempt from MIPS until the next performance year, and clinicians with a low volume threshold. In case of the latter, the provider must meet one of the following measures:

  • Billed less than $90,000 in Medicare beneficiaries in a designated period
  • Provided care for less than 200 Medicare patients a year OR less than 200 covered services

While such providers are not subject to MIPS, reporting is still a valuable way to identify gaps in care and implement cost-saving measures.

Happe-Analytics can help beyond MIPS

MIPS isn’t the only value-based incentive program for health care providers. There are multiple other programs covering different areas of medicine and aspects of care, cost savings and EHR use. Happe-Analytics integrates with almost any EHR for accurate reporting to qualify for additional incentives through other programs, without additional cost.

Are you ready to start your journey to MIPS status as an Exceptional Performer? Learn more about Happe-Analytics and contact us for a free Happe-Analytics demo today.

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