ACMSS Helps with Implementation of MACRA’s Quality Payment Program

ORANGE, CA – 21 Feb, 2017 – On October 14, the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) released the final version of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) Quality Payment Program (QPP), which is intended to streamline the Medicare system and reward physicians for quality patient care. It is assumed that MACRA will eventually also be accepted as a performance and payment-for-performance guideline for some others payers as well. This article explains some of the main points of the QPP.

“The American College of Medical Scribe Specialists (ACMSS) supports the move toward new payment schemes that we believe can help lead a revolution toward higher-quality and value-based care, and away from our former fee-for-service model, which incentivized higher volume of care and often resulted in increased low-quality and unnecessary care,” says ACMSS Executive Director Kristin Hagen. “Since the final QPP was released, we at ACMSS have been studying the nearly 2,400-page document, and we are helping eligible clinicians get ready for full implementation at the beginning of the year.”

Getting You Ready to Report

The first performance period begins Jan. 1, 2017 and closes Dec. 31, 2017. To avoid penalties, eligible clinicians should plan to report some data in 2017. The program consists of four options, and it is possible to earn a small bonus for submitting complete data for 90 days or more, or a moderate bonus for submitting complete data for all of 2017.

During 2017, eligible clinicians who choose to participate in the QPP should record quality data and how they used technology to support their practice. To potentially earn a positive payment adjustment beginning on Jan. 1, 2019 under the Merit-based Incentive Program (MIPS), they must send in data to MIPS about the care they provided and how their practices used technology in 2017 by the deadline of March 31, 2018. Those who are using an Advanced Alternative Payment Model (APM) will report through that model by the same date and may earn a 5% incentive payment in 2019.

Eligible clinicians who don’t send in any 2017 data will receive a negative 4% payment adjustment. Those who submit a minimum amount of 2017 data to Medicare can avoid a negative payment adjustment. Those who submit at least 90 days of 2017 data to Medicare may earn a neutral or small positive payment adjustment.  If eligible clinicians send a full year of 2017 data to Medicare, they may earn a moderate positive payment adjustment. To be able to earn the 5% incentive payment for participating in an Advanced APM, eligible clinicians send quality data through the Advanced APM.  If you participate in an Advanced APM in 2017, then you may earn a 5% incentive payment in 2019.

Reporting for MIPS

In 2017, eligible clinicians must report in the following three categories:

• Quality (60%)
• Advancing Care Information (25%)
• Clinical Improvement Activities (15%)

The fourth category—Cost—is not assessed in 2017

“Improving the use of healthcare technology and streamlining practices while meeting regulatory requirements is an ongoing proposition,” says Hagen. “ACMSS offers a full suite of custom consulting services, medical scribe specialist certification programs and corporate partnerships to help practices drive innovation on the people side of improvement in healthcare quality and patient safety.”

Consulting services that ACMSS provides, and the associated categories they can help practices with, include:

• Custom Consulting (All Categories)
• Standards Development (Quality, Advancing Care Information, Clinical Improvement Activities)
• Workflow Development (All Categories)
• Meeting CMS Meaningful Use (MU)/MACRA: MIPS/APM (All Categories)
• Innovating Practice: CMS MACRA: MIPS/APM (All Categories)
• Research-driven initiatives: Aligning clinical documentation to sustainable wellness and outcomes (Quality, Advancing Care Information, Clinical Improvement Activities)
• Research-driven initiatives: Creating wellness and outcomes through the art and science of clinical documentation (Quality, Advancing Care Information, Clinical Improvement Activities)
• Implementing full scope of “real-time, onsite” credentialed Certified Medical Scribe Specialists (CMSS) personnel to meet national goals (Advancing Care Information)
• Understanding innovative Systems Design; putting the CMSS/CMSA credentials to work (All Categories)
• Preparing, planning, and strategizing for the future (All Categories)
• Requirements of CMS certified personnel; why we do what we do, why it matters (Advancing Care Information)
• Requirements of CMS “CMSS” Certified Medical Scribe Specialists (Advancing Care Information)
• Value of the doctor/certified scribe/patient model (All Categories)
• Creating resourceful value in healthcare (All Categories)
• Precision Medicine: Integrative/Functional Medicine: A Different Kind of Care
• Healthcare as Unique as the Individual: Understanding the difference between our evolutionary public healthcare system through MACRA: MIPS/APM, and, Customized Precision Medicine: Integrative Medicine/Functional Medicine (All Categories)
• Creating our 21st-century patient-centric healthcare systems (All Categories)

The ACMSS certification program meets current and proposed CMS certification requirements toward use of electronic health records. ACMSS is independent from all scribe companies and organizations and works in compliance with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to meet national goals and initiatives of MIPS, MACRA, and Meaningful Use of computerized provider order entry.  Certified Medical Scribe Specialists also meet the qualified personnel standard in Certified Electronic Health Record Technology (CEHRT). 

“ACMSS is closely watching the progress of MACRA and we are excited for our future,” said Hagen. “ACMSS understands MACRA given the expertise and understanding coming through the two systems (public health/precision medicine) in respect of the patient, client, and healthcare practitioner viewpoints.  ACMSS simplifies into secure systems design, the complete library of resources that is available through secure online access per paid membership.  We believe eligible providers should move beyond the minimums for avoiding payment reductions.  In doing so, they need to connect with ACMSS, plan strategically for how they are going to advance the regulations and national goals intended to provide better care and greater value for our nation’s patients.”

The American College of Medical Scribe Specialists offers several pathways for Certified Medical Scribe Specialists and a growing list of customized, one-on-one consulting solutions. Please contact ACMSS directly at or 657-888-2158 if you have any questions regarding the ACMSS program and consulting services.

For more details on the Quality Payment Program, click here (

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Media Contact
Company Name: American College of Medical Scribe Specialists
Contact Person: Kristin Hagen
Phone: 7145871754
Country: United States