Q&A: Medicare's quality and e-prescribing bonuses

March 20, 2009

Will Medicare be giving a 2 percent bonus for e-prescribing, along with an additional 2 percent bonus for reporting quality measures?

Q: I have a question about Medicare's Physician Quality Reporting Initiative for 2009. Will Medicare be giving a 2 percent bonus for e-prescribing, along with an additional 2 percent bonus for reporting quality measures? I was among the many who were unable to receive a report of why I did not receive a bonus for 2007. I sure hope that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services gets it together for us this year. I have been unable to find the answer on the CMS website.

A: You are correct. Accessing the 2007 data is laborious and difficult. Unfortunately, more often than not, the process has proved to be unsuccessful. For 2009, eligible providers who meet the criteria for satisfactorily submitting quality measures data between January 1 and December 31 will earn an incentive payment of 2 percent of their total allowed charges for Physician Fee Schedule-covered professional services. The PQRI measures may be reported either by claims data or via CMS's internet portal. There are a number of good tools available at http://www.cms.hhs.gov/PQRI. In addition, eligible providers who prescribe electronically are eligible for another bonus of 2 percent of claims.