On November 2, The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published its “CY 2018 Updates to the Quality Payment Program Final Rule with Comment” as well as an Interim Final Rule for “Extreme and Uncontrollable Circumstance Policy for the Transition Year”. Updates to the Quality Payment Program (QPP) for 2018 will impact physician anesthesiologist participation in the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) components as well as the Advanced Alternative Payment Models (APMs). Although the administration has emphasized burden reduction, changes to the rule may offer short-term relief in lieu of addressing some of the larger concerns ASA and physician anesthesiologists have experienced with the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) in 2017.

Of note, CMS recognized the impact that natural disasters have had for eligible clinicians (ECs) in 2017. The Interim Final Rule, as noted above, applies...

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