MIPS: The Day of Reckoning

Jim TateBy Jim Tate, EMR Advocate
MACRA/MIPS Subject Matter Expert
Twitter: @JimTate, eMail: jimtate@emradvocate.com

One of my favorite books is The Big Short by Michael Lewis. It was eventually made into a movie by the same name and gives a clear view of the housing bubble that burst 10 years ago and pushed the US economy into the Great Recession. What fascinates me was the ability of some to predict, and profit, from knowing when the collapse would occur. They were able to delve into the details of millions of mortgages and see when the adjustable rates would suddenly increase leading to escalating mortgage payments and boosting the default rates dramatically. The subsequent collapse was unavoidable, and predictable.

What does this have to do with MIPS, or more specifically, an eligible clinician’s MIPS score? The common theme is the fact that the Day of Reckoning is not only inevitable, but also relatively easy to predict when it will occur. I recently wrote a post The Real MIPS Timeline: 3 Stages of MACRA and MIPS that includes my thoughts on what will happen on the day when the MIPS scores are made public.

Here is the what, where, why, and when of the MIPS Day of Reckoning:

  • What: Public Reporting of MIPS scores based on 2017 performance.
  • Where: Probably on the Physician Compare website.
  • Why: Public reporting of MIPS scores mandated by Quality Payment Program final rule.
  • When: 2017 data targeted for public reporting in late 2018.

We are approaching the final month of the 2017 reporting period. The deadline to send in performance data is March 31, 2018. Once that data is submitted it is all over except for the waiting. The dominoes are lining up and in the fourth quarter of 2018 the scores will be published online. Those that miss the deadline will have a 0 score. Those that choose the no penalty “test option” will score 3 out of 100. You can bet there will be lots of low scores, and for those that saw what was coming, the possibility of very high scores. In America we love ratings, grades, and “top ten” lists. The MIPS score methodology may not really be reflective of quality, but it is precise and that is what we like. Just boil it all down to a single number and the comparisons will begin.

This article was originally published on MIPS Consulting Blog and is republished here with permission.