CMS Approves New Quality Reporting Measures for Physician Anesthesiologists

ASA logoPhysician anesthesiologists can now choose from 36 reporting measures when participating in the ASA QCDR, the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) Qualified Clinical Data Registry (QCDR). The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) approved two new Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) measures and 16 non-PQRS measures developed by ASA and its affiliated organization, Anesthesia Quality Institute (AQI).

“The new measures empower physician anesthesiologists to report on measures that matter to their patients and their practices,” said ASA President J.P. Abenstein, M.S.E.E., M.D. “In a health care world that is moving quickly toward quality-based payment, this is an important step for the Society to help its members and anesthesia professionals everywhere.”

With the new measures, physician anesthesiologists can report on items such as patient temperature management before, during and after surgery, timely administration of antibiotics, completion of surgical safety checklists prior to anesthesia, and pain assessment and follow-up of the patient.

CMS certified AQI’s National Anesthesia Clinical Outcomes Registry (NACOR) as a QCDR in 2014. The QCDR registry is called ASA QCDR. The registry is one of only 40 entities to achieve the designation, through which registry participants select performance measures aimed at improving patient care and safety. NACOR tracks patient and disease data to improve quality of care and reports physician performance. In the coming years, CMS will phase out claims-based reporting in favor of registry-based reporting, transferring responsibilities to registries like AQI’s NACOR.

“The QCDR designation has been pivotal to improving quality reporting,” said AQI Executive Director Richard Dutton, M.D., M.B.A. “ASA can now select and develop its own physician performance measures, rather than being limited to the measures approved by CMS. With 36 measures covering a variety of anesthesia cases and patient types, ASA and AQI are well positioned to help providers improve patient care, as well as avoid penalties for 2015 reporting.”

Physician anesthesiologists who fail to satisfactorily report PQRS in 2015 will receive payment penalties of 2 percent in 2017 with an additional negative 2-4 percent Value-Based Payment Modifier (based upon practice size) assessed on their claims that year.

The American Society of Anesthesiologists
Founded in 1905, the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) is an educational, research and scientific society with more than 52,000 members organized to raise and maintain the standards of the medical practice of anesthesiology. ASA is committed to ensuring physician anesthesiologists evaluate and supervise the medical care of patients before, during and after surgery to provide the highest quality and safest care every patient deserves.

For more information on the field of anesthesiology, visit the American Society of Anesthesiologists online at To learn more about the role physician anesthesiologists play in ensuring patient safety, visit Join the social conversation today. Like ASA on Facebook, follow ASALifeline on Twitter.