Tuesday, May 31, 2011

CMS Requests Input onProposed Rule for eRx Incentive Program

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced proposed changes to the Medicare Electronic Prescribing (eRx) Incentive Program.

CMS’ proposed rule on electronic prescribing is available for public review and comment by clicking here. The proposed rule will be published in the Federal Register on June 1, 2011. The comment period will close on July 25, 2011. For more information about the Electronic Prescribing Incentive Program, please click here.

Section 132 of the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008 (MIPPA) amended the Social Security Act to require the Secretary to establish a new reporting program that offers a combination of financial incentives and payment adjustments to eligible professionals to encourage electronic prescribing. Section 1848(m)(3)(B) of the Social Security Act (the Act), as added and amended by MIPPA, sets forth the requirements for being a successful electronic prescriber.

Although the Electronic Prescribing Incentive Program has similarities in structure and processes to the Physician Quality Reporting System (formerly the Physician Quality Reporting Initiative or PQRI), the Electronic Prescribing Incentive Program is a standalone program with distinct reporting requirements and associated incentive payments and payment adjustments.

Under the eRx Incentive Program, eligible professionals who are successful electronic prescribers can receive a 1-percent incentive payment for program years 2011 and 2012, and 0.5 percent for 2013. In addition to incentive payments, MIPPA requires a Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) payment adjustment, beginning in 2012, for eligible professionals who are not successful electronic prescribers. For the 2012 electronic prescribing payment adjustment, the fee schedule amount for covered professional services furnished by such professionals during the year shall be 1.0 percent less than the PFS amount that would otherwise apply. The PFS reductions for eligible professionals who are not successful electronic prescribers in the future are as follows: 1.5 percent for 2013 and 2.0 percent for 2014.

CMS’ proposed rule may be viewed here.

Source: CMS News Release

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