CMSMore than 257,000 U.S. doctors will see their Medicare payments cut by 1% next year because they didn’t meet federal goals for using electronic medical records, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Doctor with MoneyMeaningful use 2 (MU2), which has been a challenge for physicians, is unlikely to get easier in 2015.  Starting in 2015, eligible professionals (EPs) will see a 1% decrease in Medicare reimbursements for each year they don’t meet meaningful use requirements. The penalty will change by 1% point each year to a maximum of 5%.

CMS

Back in November, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services published the final Physician Fee Schedule rule for 2015.  The rule brings a number of changes that doctors and practice managers need to understand about chronic care, telehealth and meaningful use.

Shared Medical Appointments Billing: CPT Code 99078There is increasing evidence of the benefit of shared or group visits as an alternate method of scheduling patients with similar, often chronic, conditions.

Doctor with PatientSmooth and efficient appointment scheduling is critical to patient satisfaction, physician efficiency and staff morale.  Many practices don't think carefully enough about the strategy and structure of their patient scheduling policies.

appointmentSoon patients will be able to interact with physicians the same way they buy clothes or music—online.

congressDespite calls from the AMA and some statewide medical societies (New York and Texas most notably) to include an additional two-year delay of ICD-10 in the $1 trillion omnibus 

CMS recently announced changes to the use of the -59 modifier which could impact medical billing submissions and provider reimbursement. Modifier -59 indicates that a code represents a service that is separate and distinct from another service with which it would usually be considered to be bundled for payment purposes. Per CMS, due to “chronic overuse” of modifier -59, they have created a new series of modifiers which provide more specificity of the distinct procedural service.

Doctor with MoneyThe Affordable Care Act (ACA) provision to increase Medicaid reimbursement to primary care physicians is set to end on December 31. Unless Congress acts to extend so-called Medicaid parity, primary care physicians (PCPs) will face reimbursement decreases.

certificateThere are four main organizations that accredit or certify PCMHs: