in HIPAA Headlines by John Brewer

As noted on, many doctors are not getting their Medicare quality bonuses due to reporting challenges.

What’s this all about?

In 2009 over 1 million physicians & health professionals were eligible to report for the Physician Quality Reporting System, also known as PQRI.  Apparently only 210,000 participated.  Note, this is a voluntary program…for now.

Of that 210,000, only 120,000 earned a bonus.  Total bonuses paid out? About $240 million.  That means about $2,000 to each professional that earned a bonus.

Can anyone spot the reason why participation is low?

I could go into my own PQRI horror stories right now, but I’ll save that for another day, the real reason this caught my eye is how this ties into Meaningful Use.

As I’ve said before, anytime the government give out money, they make it very difficult to get that money.
The only example I can come up with that goes against this statement is those who file a 1040EZ tax return…I’m guessing not too many of you do this.

PQRI is on the surface simple, but there are so many hoops to jump through, you can go through a year of reporting and still not qualify because of something you did wrong.

Not even wrong, but not completely correct.

It’s like getting insurance reimbursements…every “i” dotted, every “t” crossed or your paperwork is returned.

The same goes for Meaningful Use Attestation.  Simple on the surface, but once you get into it, the maze of complexity really shows its face.

Why is reporting so difficult?  Simply because there is that small percentage out there that will steal from the CMS every chance they get.

In the flying world, they are referred to as the “one percenters”.  That small group of problem “children” that makes your life difficult.

So, since there are folks out there that would rather steal that do things correctly, you have a gazillion hoops to jump through to get your reimbursement checks.

Meaningful Use attestation is one hoop that contains a whole bunch more hoops that you must jump through.

There is a lot of red tape to deal with.  You can either fight against this red tape…which will just get stickier and sticker…
OR you can accept there are a bunch of rules…and follow them.

Fighting the rules might feel good.

But the reality is, that is a losing battle.

Wouldn’t it be a whole lot easier if you just complied with the crazy rules…and got your reimbursement check?

The trick here is knowing the rules.

Lots of those professionals who didn’t get a PQRI reimbursement didn’t know all the rules.

They probably tried to do it all on their own.

Meaningful Use Attestation is similar.  Don’t drop this on your practice manager, to add the the dozens of other things on the desk.

Find someone who can help you make attestation easy to do.


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