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Texas HIE Approved as CMS Qualified Registry

March 29, 2017
by Rajiv Leventhal
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Healthcare Access San Antonio (HASA), a health information exchange (HIE) organization in San Antonio and surrounding Texas counties, has received clearance from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to become a qualified registry, News Radio 1200 WAOI reported.

According to the report, HASA will be able to use electronic health records (EHRs) it gets from providers across the region to provide documentation for physicians to more easily receive reimbursement from Medicaid and Medicare.

CMS-authorized qualified registries were designed for the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) beginning in 2014, as they have the clearance to report quality measure data to CMS, on behalf of eligible professionals (EPs). In addition to PQRS, the data submitted by the qualified registries may also be used for other CMS initiatives like the Value-based Payment Modifier (VBM), Physician Compare, and the EHR Incentive Program.

This becomes a more important issue now that some of these reporting programs, such as PQRS and VBM, are streamlined under the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS, which is a payment path within MACRA’s Quality Payment Program for clinician reimbursement. Most eligible Medicare physicians will be participating in MIPS early on, so the impact of efficient reporting is significant—MIPS payment adjustments are applied to Medicare Part B payments two years after the performance year.

As such, HASA CEO told the news station, “We looked at our information, we looked at our data capacity, and we realized that we have a wonderful opportunity to help these physicians. Not only to help pull their data together for them, but to submit this data to the feds, so the doctors don't have to spend a lot of time and a lot of office work to accomplish that."

Van Oort added that HASA can even do a more complete job than the physicians can, due to the complex nature of EHRs, noting that physicians will be able to receive proper and fair reimbursement from federal health programs, such as MACRA. "For instance, if the patient has had some event at another location, like if they had a blood test at the  hospital, the physician will still get credit for that event," he said to News Radio 1200 WAOI.

 

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