CMS: Further guidance on telehealth, exceptions and extensions for quality measure reporting and data submission

By David White

March 23, 2020

Given the enormous impact of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) on the healthcare system, the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) and other members of the kidney community have requested regulatory relief for clinicians and facilities on multiple fronts over the past few weeks. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and other agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services are responding in kind. The following is an update for ASN members on several major steps of importance to nephrologists and their patients that CMS has taken, particularly:

  • Providing further guidance and clarity regarding telehealth issues
  • Implementing policy exceptions and extensions for upcoming quality measure reporting and data submission deadlines
     

CMS has also released the 2019-Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Medicare Provider Enrollment Relief Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), which addresses multiple questions from waivers to practice across state lines to Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) approval of temporary Medicare billing privileges.


Telehealth

As reported here earlier, CMS has expanded telehealth coverage enabling clinicians to provide telehealth services for beneficiaries residing across the entire country – a move ASN strongly supported. Now CMS has issued two tool kits that provide far greater detail for ASN members to use including approved CPT codes. Go to:

  • ESRD Provider Telehealth and Telemedicine Tool Kit
  • General Provider Telehealth and Telemedicine Tool Kit

     

Relief from quality measure reporting and data submission deadlines

CMS has made exceptions in quality reporting and deadlines for a range of programs such as:

  • Quality Payment Program -Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)
  • Medicare Shared Savings Program Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs)
  • CrownWeb National End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Patient Registry and Quality Measure Reporting System
  • ESRD Quality Incentive Program (QIP)
  • Home Health Quality Reporting Program
     

CMS writes “For those programs with data submission deadlines in April and May 2020, submission of those data will be optional based on the facility’s choice to report. In addition, no data reflecting services provided January 1, 2020-June 30, 2020 will be used in CMS’s calculations for the Medicare quality reporting and value-based purchasing programs in order to reduce providers’ data collection and reporting burden as they are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The 2019 MIPS data submission deadline has been by extended by 30 days to April 30, 2020. If you have already submitted data and need to revise any of it, you can still make changes by logging into qpp.cms.gov by the new deadline.

Updates will be provided as they occur.

Category:
Subcategory:
Author:
David White
Body:

Given the enormous impact of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) on the healthcare system, the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) and other members of the kidney community have requested regulatory relief for clinicians and facilities on multiple fronts over the past few weeks. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and other agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services are responding in kind. The following is an update for ASN members on several major steps of importance to nephrologists and their patients that CMS has taken, particularly:

  • Providing further guidance and clarity regarding telehealth issues
  • Implementing policy exceptions and extensions for upcoming quality measure reporting and data submission deadlines
     

CMS has also released the 2019-Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Medicare Provider Enrollment Relief Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), which addresses multiple questions from waivers to practice across state lines to Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) approval of temporary Medicare billing privileges.


Telehealth

As reported here earlier, CMS has expanded telehealth coverage enabling clinicians to provide telehealth services for beneficiaries residing across the entire country – a move ASN strongly supported. Now CMS has issued two tool kits that provide far greater detail for ASN members to use including approved CPT codes. Go to:

  • ESRD Provider Telehealth and Telemedicine Tool Kit
  • General Provider Telehealth and Telemedicine Tool Kit

     

Relief from quality measure reporting and data submission deadlines

CMS has made exceptions in quality reporting and deadlines for a range of programs such as:

  • Quality Payment Program -Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)
  • Medicare Shared Savings Program Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs)
  • CrownWeb National End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Patient Registry and Quality Measure Reporting System
  • ESRD Quality Incentive Program (QIP)
  • Home Health Quality Reporting Program
     

CMS writes “For those programs with data submission deadlines in April and May 2020, submission of those data will be optional based on the facility’s choice to report. In addition, no data reflecting services provided January 1, 2020-June 30, 2020 will be used in CMS’s calculations for the Medicare quality reporting and value-based purchasing programs in order to reduce providers’ data collection and reporting burden as they are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The 2019 MIPS data submission deadline has been by extended by 30 days to April 30, 2020. If you have already submitted data and need to revise any of it, you can still make changes by logging into qpp.cms.gov by the new deadline.

Updates will be provided as they occur.

Date:
Monday, March 23, 2020