The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services today announced plans to advance a Medicare Advantage Qualifying Payment Arrangement Incentive (MAQI) Demonstration that would exempt clinicians who participate in certain payment arrangements with MA organizations from the Merit-based Incentive Payment System’s reporting requirements and payment adjustment. The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 created two payment tracks for clinicians under the Medicare fee-for-service program: MIPS, which requires clinicians to report quality data to CMS and adjusts their payment accordingly, and Advanced Alternative Payment Models, which require clinicians to take on risk for their patients’ health care spending. “CMS intends to test whether MIPS exemptions provided to clinicians under MAQI will increase participation in Medicare Advantage plans that are similar to Advanced APMs, and thereby accelerate the transition to a health care system that pays for value and outcomes,” said CMS Administrator Seema Verma. CMS is accepting comments for 60 days on the estimated information collection burden associated with its proposal. AHA has urged CMS to count MA risk arrangements toward MACRA programs.

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