MGMA: Practices unhappy with PQRI

February 25, 2010

Medical practice leaders continue to experience administrative challenges reporting data for Medicare?s Physician Quality Reporting Initiative, according to results of a survey recently released by the Medical Group Management Association. Specifically, respondents reported difficulty accessing the feedback reports and said that the presentation of information in the reports was not satisfactory.

Medical practice leaders continue to experience administrative challenges reporting data for Medicare's Physician Quality Reporting Initiative (PQRI), according to results of a survey recently released by the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA). Specifically, respondents reported difficulty accessing the feedback reports and said that the presentation of information in the reports was not satisfactory.

"Though MGMA and its members remain committed to supporting clinical quality improvement initiatives, data from this research shines a bright spotlight on the underlying administrative difficulties with this program," William F. Jessee, MD, FACMPE, MGMA president and chief executive officer, said in a prepared statement.

MGMA conducted the research in January. Data include feedback from 429 respondents representing 11,419 providers in medical practice.

Of responding practices that attempted to participate in the 2008 PQRI, 48 percent reported being able to successfully access their 2008 PQRI feedback report, a decline from the 51 percent that were able to retrieve their 2007 PQRI feedback report. Sixty percent of the practices that accessed their 2008 feedback reports said they were dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with the report's presentation of the information. Sixty-seven percent said they were dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with the 2008 PQRI report's effectiveness in providing guidance to improve patient care outcomes. Compared with the approximately five hours it took to access their 2007 PQRI feedback reports, on average, it collectively took almost nine hours by all practice staff and physicians to successfully download the 2008 PQRI feedback reports.

"Similar to our earlier PQRI research, our members continue to express frustration over the unreasonable lag time between reporting PQRI data and receipt of the results," said Jessee. MGMA is asking the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and Congress to improve the program.