The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has released its strategic vision for physician quality reporting programs, describing a state in which measurements and public reporting are aligned and optimized across various programs to ease the reporting processes.

“This vision acknowledges the constraints and requirements of existing physician quality reporting programs, as well as the role quality measurement plays in CMS’ evolving approach to provider payment, which is moving from a purely fee-for-service payment system to payment models that reward providers based on the quality and cost of care provided,” states the document.

Quality measurement and public reporting of provider performance is currently achieved via the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS)—through which eligible healthcare professionals report on certain quality measures—and Physician Compare, which helps patients and caregivers select healthcare professionals participating in Medicare, among other programs.

Also See: CMS to Explain One-Time Reporting for Four Quality Programs

Patrick Conway, M.D., CMS principal deputy administrator and chief medical officer, writes in an April 23 blog that the strategic vision evolved out of CMS’s desire to plan for the future of how the agency will administer PQRS, Physician Feedback/Value-Based Payment Modifier Program, and other physician quality reporting programs.

“With passage of H.R.2 [SGR repeal and Medicare provider payment modernization], key components of these physician programs will serve as the foundation for the Merit-based Incentive Payment System,” according to Conway. “The Strategic Vision describes in concrete terms how we will advance the goals and objectives for quality improvement outlined in the CMS Quality Strategy through these quality measurement and reporting programs.”

The strategic vision is based five principles CMS believes will ensure that quality measurement and public reporting play a critical role in improving healthcare:

*Input from patients, caregivers, and healthcare professionals will guide the programs.

*Feedback and data drives rapid cycle quality improvement.

*Public reporting provides meaningful, transparent, and actionable information.

*Quality reporting programs rely on an aligned measure portfolio.

*Quality reporting and value-based purchasing program policies are aligned.

“Our long-term vision for physician quality reporting programs and the improvement of these programs challenges us to continue striving for excellence in healthcare quality over the next several years,” concludes Conway.

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