It’s official. Happy has now earned his CMS physician pay for performance PQRI Bonus for 2008, a direct deposit into Happy’s bank account. PQRI stands for Physician Quality Reporting Initiative. How much was my PQRI Medicare pay for performance bonus for calendar year 2008? A $2,500 check written out directly to Happy by the Medicare National Bank. CMS gives a wonderful overview of the history of PQRI . PQRI is the Medicare pay for performance program for physicians that was initiated by Congressional mandate in the latter half of 2007. Doctors have an opportunity to earn back 2% of their gross Medicare collections (which the government calls a bonus but which I call legalized theft) by submitting a grotesque amount of quality performance paper work to the Medicare National Bank. It’s one giant PQRI guideline game.
PQRI reporting is currently voluntary, but legislation in future years will certainly mandate reductions in payment for not submitting data, all but making this program a punitive standard. Many physicians failed to meet the requirements to get paid under CMS pay for performance program guidelines in the latter half of 2007, the first year for PQRI measures. Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at The Happy Hospitalist Blog*
How has the Physician Quality Reporting Initiative (PQRI) been going? Some insights are offered from an internist in the trenches, (the only 1 of 20 physicians in his practice who was able to figure out how to comply with the PQRI rules), The Happy Hospitalist:
I found out today many docs may not have qualified because of the way the government PQRI computers crunched the data (imagine that). You see, if my quality indicator was for antiplatelet use in stroke, and I submitted to CMS stroke as the 4th ICD code, along with three comorbid conditions ( like DM, COPD, CAD), unless I submitted stroke as diagnosis #1, PQRI would reject my submission. So CMS accepts your E&M code with stroke listed as the 4th diagnosis to get paid, but when that claim makes it to the PQRI folks, because stroke was diagnosis #4 and not diagnosis#1, PQRI would reject the submission and doctors all over this country were dinged for not reporting on 80% of qualified patients…
I also found out that PQRI indicator #36 calls for rehab ordered for all “intracranial” hemorrhage. During my meeting today I found out that the only ICD codes linked to this quality indicator are “intracerebral” hemorrhage. Sub dural bleeds, which are intracranial, are excluded. So are subarachnoids. They have problems even defining what they are trying to measure.