Archive | October 2011

November 1 is the Deadline to Apply for a Medicare E-Prescribing Exemption!

Most physicians must have successfully e-prescribed in the first six months of 2011 to avoid a 1% penalty on their 2012 Medicare fees. If you did not successfully e-prescribe, you may be eligible for an exemption, but you must apply by November 1. 

Some physicians who were not eligible for the e-prescribing incentive program, may not be subject to the 1% penalty. However, those physicians must do the calculations to determine if they fall into these ineligible categories. Ineligible categories include: physicians who had less than 100 claims that fall in the e-prescribing measure specifications; or physicians whose e-prescribing measure specifications represented less than 10% of their allowable part B charges. The time period to calculate these two categories is between January 1, 2011 and June 30, 2011. View an MSNJ tip sheet on how to calculate the 10% eligibility threshold. Physicians will have to review all claims submitted to determine if they have less than 100 cases.)

While CMS has stated that no action is necessary on the part of physicians who fall into these two categories, MSNJ has learned that Highmark Medicare Services will not be able to indicate to physicians whether they fall into these two categories based on their claims data before the November 1, 2011 exemption filing deadline.  Therefore, practices should carefully consider whether it is in their best interest to file for an exemption, explaining their situation before the November 1 deadline.

To assess whether or not your practice is likely to fall into the “less than 10%” category, view AMA’s Medicare charges by specialties chart, read CMS’ updated notes and claims-based reporting principles for eRx incentive program, and AMA’s tips to avoid eRx penalty.

Remember, each physician must calculate whether he or she falls into an eligible category. And, even though CMS says that no action is necessary, consider whether or not it is prudent to file for an exemption nevertheless.

National Provider Call on PQRS & E-Prescribing Incentive Program 
CMS is hosting a PQRS & E-Prescribing Incentive Program National Provider Call on Tuesday, October 18 from 1:30 P.M. to 3:00 P.M. This call will cover: program announcements, overview of the Medicare E-Prescribing Incentive Program Feedback Reports, and a Q&A. Register online by October 18.

Teleconference: E-Prescribing & Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) 
Highmark Medicare Services will host a teleconference on E-Prescribing & Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) on October 17, 2011 at 9:00 A.M. and October 20, 2011 at 1:00 P.M. They will review the Physician Quality Reporting System and E-prescribing Incentive Programs and provide an overview of the websites to locate incentive information. Teleconference instructions and handout materials are now available.

2012 MSNJ Committee Openings

Friends and Colleagues,

It is my honor to have been asked to serve as the 2012 Chairman of the Nominating Committee. 2012 will bring challenges for us all as medicine stands on the verge of changes that come at most, once in a generation. Government, payers and employers are desperately seeking solutions to spiraling costs at a time of diminishing resources. Now, more than ever, we need to reach inside and recommit both to each other and to our patients.

In looking over the list of offices to be filled by election at next year’s annual meeting, I see the greatest opportunity in my 25 years as a member to bring forward our next generation of leaders. Our best and brightest need to take ownership of their futures together.

As Theodore Roosevelt once said, “Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.” We have at-large openings on the Board of Trustees for more seasoned leaders, on the Policy & Strategy Panel through the Council of Medical Services, the Council on Legislation, the Council on Public Health and the Council on Medical Education. And for those who secretly wanted to be a “wedding planner,” we even have openings on the Annual Meeting Committee.

I ask you all to reach out and engage the “thought leaders” in your groups, counties and hospitals. It’s a chance to learn how the world works, and how we can help shape it. MSNJ remains our most effective way to not just respond to change, but to create it.

Will Rogers put it this way, “We always want the best man to win an election. Unfortunately, he never runs.” Let’s not let that happen! Mentoring is the most important part of leadership.

All of us are surrounded by talented, committed colleagues. We will need them all in the years ahead. I look forward to the meeting in January. Find something that triggers your passion and start your medical leadership journey – and bring a friend!

Rick Scott, MD
215th President of the Medical Society of New Jersey
2012 Chairman of the Nominating Committee

List of openings

Interested? Contact MSNJ today.