by Christine Woolstenhulme, QCC, QMCS, CPC, CMRS
July 18th, 2018
Spend more time with patients and less time documenting? Great Concept!
Document meaningful information? Sound good?
CMS is proposing just that! CMS released a new proposal July 12, 2018, focused on streamlining clinician billing and expanding access to high-quality care. The goal is to improve and restore the doctor-patient relationship, modernize Medicare payment policies and promote access to virtual care.
CMS stated in the news release; “The proposed rules would fundamentally improve the nation’s healthcare system and help restore the doctor-patient relationship by empowering clinicians to use their electronic health records (EHRs) to document clinically meaningful information, instead of information that is only for billing purposes.”
- Simplify, streamline and offer flexibility in documentation requirements for Evaluation and Management office visits — which make up about 20 percent of allowed charges under the Physician Fee Schedule and consume much of clinicians’ time;
- Reduce unnecessary physician supervision of radiologist assistants for diagnostic tests; and
- Remove burdensome and overly complex functional status reporting requirements for outpatient therapy.
CMS estimates this new plan will save clinicians an estimated 51 hours per year if 40% of their patients are in Medicare, this is a significant game changer, public feedback has been heard and changes are being made.
Additional changes in the proposal addressed
- Streamlining Evaluation and Management (E&M) Payment and Reducing Clinician Burden
- Medicare Advantage Qualifying Payment Arrangement Incentive (MAQI) Demonstration
- Advancing Virtual Care
- Lowering Drug Costs
- Price transparency: Request for information
Public comments on the proposed rules are due by September 10, 2018.
For a fact sheet on the CY 2019 Physician Fee Schedule proposed rule, please visit: