CMS to Pay for Chronic Care Management in 2015

CMS to Pay for Chronic Care Management in 2015 Medicare predominately pays physicians and other practitioners for care management services as part of face-to-face visits. However, citing a commitment to support primary care, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will begin payment January 1, 2015, for managing the care of Medicare...

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Sustainable Growth Rate: Unsustainable for Iowa Docs

Sustainable Growth Rate: <em>Unsustainable</em> for Iowa Docs Congress is back in Washington to finish remaining legislative business for the year, and at the top of the list for Iowa physicians is permanent repeal of the flawed Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR). Without congressional action prior to March 31, 2015, Iowa physicians face an unsustainable...

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Medicare News You Need To Know Now

Medicare News You Need To Know Now Throughout the year, IMS advocates on your behalf before Congress and the Administration for changes and improvements in Medicare. IMS also strives to keep you abreast of various Medicare programs, updates, and issues. With so much happening right now with Medicare, we are producing a second IMS Advocate...

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CY2015 Final Rule and SGR Formula

During the November 12 Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) physician open door forum call for physicians, the CY 2015 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule final rule was featured. The final rule was available for review on October 31 and published in the November 13 Federal Register. Fact...

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November 30: New Deadline to Apply for Meaningful Use Hardship Exception Extension

November 30: New Deadline to Apply for Meaningful Use Hardship Exception Extension In the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), Congress mandated that payment adjustments should be applied to Medicare Eligible Professionals (EPs) who are not meaningful users of Certified Electronic Health Record Technology (CEHRT) under the Medicare EHR Incentive Program. If a provider...

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2013 Quality and Resource Use Reports Now Available

On September 30, 2014, CMS made 2013 Quality and Resource Use Reports (QRURs) available to group practices and physician solo practitioners nationwide. The 2013 QRURs contain quality and cost performance data for CY 2013, which is the performance period for the Value-Based Payment Modifier (VBM) that...

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PQRS Moving from Incentives to Negative Adjustments

PQRS gives participating eligible professionals (EPs) the opportunity to assess the quality of care they are providing to their patients, helping to ensure that patients get the right care at the right time. To encourage eligible healthcare professionals to report on specific quality measures, PQRS...

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Physicians: Application of Value-Based Payment Modifiers to be finalized in 2017

In the CY 2015 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule final rule, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) finalized the application of the Value-based Payment Modifier (VBM) to all physicians in 2017 but delayed implementation to other non-physician providers until 2018. There will be category 1...

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IME Working to Address Health and Wellness Plan Administrative Burden

IME Working to Address Health and Wellness Plan Administrative Burden This summer, IMS worked with Iowa Medicaid Enterprise (IME) Provider Services to organize a series of Iowa Health and Wellness Plan Roundtable Discussions in conjunction with Medicaid's Annual Provider Trainings around the state. These roundtables were an opportunity for clinics to have an open, frank...

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DEA Reschedules Hydrocodone Combination Products; Refills may not be honored

DEA Reschedules Hydrocodone Combination Products; Refills may not be honored In less than two weeks, on October 6, 2014, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Final Rule rescheduling hydrocodone combination products (HCPs) into Controlled Substance Schedule II will take effect.  Despite the DEA rule stating refills for HCPs written prior to October 6,...

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New Iowa Physician Workforce Data Shows Critical Shortages Persist

New Iowa Physician Workforce Data Shows Critical Shortages Persist According to new data from the AMA, Iowa ranks 44th nationally in terms of access to direct patient care physicians*, a drop from 43rd in the previous year. In 16 of 25 identified specialties, Iowa ranks 40th or lower. Here is a snapshot of Iowa’s national ranking per population (includes 50 states...

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Wellmark launches system of real-time provider updates

Wellmark launches system of real-time provider updates Wellmark is making it easier for providers to learn about changes and issues that impact their day-to-day business operations. The new Wellmark Information Notification System (WINS) is a real-time messaging service that allows providers to register to receive email alerts that are relevant to their...

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Promoting Conversations through Choosing Wisely

Promoting Conversations through Choosing Wisely Helping physicians and patients engage in crucial conversations by Jeffrey Maire, DO Every day, crucial conversations between physicians and patients take place, discussing the medical options relating to the needs of that patient.  The physicians are striving to provide the safe, high-quality...

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IMS Board Endorses Innovative New Tort Reform Measures

IMS Board Endorses Innovative New Tort Reform Measures Meaningful tort reform in Iowa is a top legislative priority of the Iowa Medical Society. While the General Assembly earlier this year appeared poised to enact several reforms, IMS was disappointed when legislative leaders yielded on reform in negotiations during the final hours of session. In assessing...

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Iowa Health Insurance Marketplace Resources

Iowa Health Insurance Marketplace Resources Research suggests physicians will be one of the top three sources for patients seeking information regarding the new Health Insurance Marketplace. Are you prepared to point them in the right direction? To help your patients obtain the coverage they need, use the following resources. What is the Marketplace? Established...

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Watch Michael Romano, MD talk about RAGBRAI and why he enjoys practicing medicine in Iowa

Watch Michael Romano, MD talk about RAGBRAI and why he enjoys practicing medicine in Iowa "Getting physicians to visit Iowa is the tough part. Once we get them here, they figure it out and ask, 'Where have you guys been?' They discover that Iowa is really a gem. Once they figure out that they actually have to live where they practice, they decide that Iowa is a pretty...

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Know your Legislator

Representative Linda Upmeyer

Representative Linda Upmeyer


House Majority Leader
Clear Lake
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