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Top 10 MACRA Considerations for Providers

By Christopher Cheney  
   May 10, 2017

6. MACRA-induced physician-practice consolidation: Black Book found that three-quarters of independent physician practices surveyed are considering selling their practice to a health system, hospital, or large group practice because of the regulatory and capital-cost burdens of MACRA.

In an equally dour data point, 68% of independent physicians predicted that MACRA would either burden or bankrupt their practice by 2020.

7. Economic incentives: For the first five years of the Quality Payment Program, there are powerful economic incentives to beat the MIPS performance threshold.

In 2019, MIPS is set to redistribute about $199 million from physicians who perform below the performance threshold to physicians above the threshold, and this redistribution mechanism is set to expand over time.

There also is $500 million in supplemental funding available for each of the first five years of MIPS implementation. To chase these opportunities, 64% of hospital-networked physician organizations reported including incentives in physician-compensation packages to boost MIPS performance.

8. Reputation risk: A majority (54%) of those surveyed did not know that MACRA would result in performance data being reported publicly through Medicare's Physician Compare website and other rating systems.

9. ACO appeal: Joining an accountable care organization can increase the odds of MIPS success through penalty avoidance and resource utilization bonuses. Small physician practices have taken notice, with 67% considering joining an ACO to increase the likelihood of MIPS success.

10. Cost and quality transparency: Based on its physician-practice survey and other research, Black Book Research expects MACRA to be one of the market factors driving healthcare cost and quality transparency.

One survey noted 52% of large group practices, independent practice associations, ACOs, and integrated delivery networks reported they were preparing to release cost and quality measures for individual physicians by next year.

Christopher Cheney is the senior clinical care​ editor at HealthLeaders.

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