For the foreseeable future, MACRA requirements are in place and here to stay. While many are scrambling to understand the new rules and perhaps complaining about the changes it brings, one simple fact is clear: ignoring MACRA will directly cost you money.
Conversely though, the program also offers unprecedented opportunities for medical practices. Embrace it, and the benefits the program brings, are yours sooner than later. Although complicated, MACRA does indeed provide means for good news to medical practices. Here are four ways MACRA can help your practice…
1. Elimination of Sustainable Growth Formula
MACRA replaces the payment formula set forth by the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) which had been spiraling out of control and considered a dysfunctional mess for physicians. MACRA prevents previously scheduled payment cuts to Medicare recipients, thus the doctors that treat them. With MACRA, the SGR is gone, and the yearly uncertainty surrounding the fix is gone..
2. Potential for greater reimbursement
MACRA’s clearest benefit for physicians is a financial incentive for compliance with the rules. The increase in reimbursement can be up to 5%, and additional modifier incentives are available for the results-driven accountability of patient care. On $500,000 of revenue, that’s an extra $35,000 for the same amount of patient care.
3. Improved patient outcomes
MACRA’s structure is designed to overhaul the entire medical community. The program’s design moves payment from a service-based reimbursement to a “value-based” health care system that rewards outcomes. The requirements within MACRA are expected to result in the more thoughtful selection of tests, more streamlined diagnoses, and ultimately healthier patients.
4. Streamlined systems
While daunting in its infancy, the reporting requirements of MACRA will be addressed through new vendors and technology. Intimidating changes will transition into new systems that offer continuity between providers as well as great strides in the health information exchange (HIE) — a key goal for the program. While it’s rare for a practice to proactively make such a rapid change, modern technology and new reporting tools can bring significant benefit and efficiency to your practice.