Top Takeaways from the August 4, 2017 CMS Clinician Outreach Meeting

By Policy and Advocacy Brief posted 15 days ago


Top takeaways from the August 4, 2017 Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Clinician Outreach Meeting focused on the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative (TCPI), upcoming National Provider Enrollment Conference, and the Physician Regulatory Issues Team (PRIT) Reporting Tool Pilot.


  • The agency is midway through the TCPI, a large quality improvement initiative currently undergoing a four-year model test. The initiative is looking to enroll more than 140,000 clinicians, mostly in the outpatient setting. To date, the agency has enrolled 120,000 physicians (covering 23,000 practices) into 29 Practice Transformation Networks (e.g., Mayo Clinic). Ten clinician associations (e.g., American Medical Association, National Nurse Consortium) are helping the TCPI move forward by providing resources --such as quality modules-- to practices.
  • The purposes of this initiative is to transform practices over to alternative payment models (APM), prevent 5 million hospitalizations, and generate cost savings in the $1-to-4 million range while preventing unnecessary testing and procedures.
  • Two-thirds of the clinicians in the initiative are reportedly from specialty practices and often reported barriers with retrieving quality data from their EMRs; calculating the cost savings generated into dollar amounts
  • See the TCPI website for a full listing of Support and Alignment Networks as well as the Practice Transformation Networks.
  • The agency is sharing best practices within the TCPI’s learning community on topics such as improving quality outcomes, generating cost savings; addressing physician burnout; strategizing on patient and family engagement; preparing for the Quality Payment Program; and tackling the opioid crisis.

Inaugural National Provider Enrollment Conference

  • Registration is now open for the first National Provider Enrollment Conference will be held on September 6 and 7 in Charleston, SC. There is no charge for the conference.
  • This meeting will include face-to-face time with CMS experts and Medicare Administrative Contractor provider enrollment experts. There will be breakout sessions on re-validation, using the Provider Enrollment Chain and Ownership System (PECOS), and how to avoid processing delays, and other focused topics of interests.
  • The agenda and list of speakers are here.

PRIT Reporting Tool Pilot

  • The PRIT is modernizing the effort of capturing and reporting information from the agency on its website. CMS would like feedback on this reporting tool, visit the PRIT website for more information.

Quality Payment Program (QPP) Exception Form Online

  • The QPP Hardship Exception Application for the 2017 transition year is now available on the Quality Payment Program website.
  • MIPS eligible clinicians and groups may qualify for a reweighting of their Advancing Care Information performance category score to 0 percent of the final score, and can submit a hardship exception application, for one of the following specified reasons:
    • Insufficient internet connectivity
    • Extreme and uncontrollable circumstances
    • Lack of control over the availability of Certified EHR Technology (CEHRT)

QPP Office Hours

  • CMS will convene an office hours session on August 16 on the draft provisions included in the QPP Year 2 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM).
  • CMS will provide a brief overview of the QPP and address questions from attendees on the Year 2 NPRM.
  • Register here.

The next Clinician Outreach Meeting is September 1, 2017.