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CMS to test pay for performance in small practices

Physician Practice Advisor, October 18, 2006

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced plans for a new demonstration aimed at rewarding physicians for quality care in solo or small to medium sized group practices. CMS has already implemented similar pay-for-performance demonstrations at acute care hospitals and large, multi-specialty group practices.

Approximately 800 practices in Arkansas, California, Massachusetts, and Utah will be recruited to partcipate in the three-year demonstration, according to a CMS press release. Participating physicians will submit data annually on up to 26 quality measures related to the care of patients with diabetes, congestive heart failure, and coronary artery disease.

In the demonstration's first year, physicians will be paid for reporting the information-without regard to performance-to help physicians become familiar with the quality measurement process. Afterward, practices will be eligible to earn an annual incentive of up to $10,000 per physician and $50,000 per practice per year based on their performance on the quality measures.

Click here to read the CMS press release.