Feature August 17, 2021 John Bernot, MD

Reap the financial rewards of value-based care without the reporting complexity: EQIP for Maryland clinicians

Enroll in EQIP today. The deadline to apply is September 1, 2021.

The goal of the Merit-Based Incentive Program System (MIPS) and similar value-based care payment programs is to reward high-quality clinicians participating in Medicare with increased payments. Conversely, MIPS and other programs penalize clinicians who do not meet performance standard benchmarks by reducing payments and reimbursements. 

The operational lift on providers, clinicians, and their staff to participate in these programs and demonstrate quality is significant. 

Determining MIPS program eligibility, the types of quality measures you can submit, and the submission process is enough to make your head spin. Not to mention the complex quality measures and activities your practice must track and report on throughout the year. 

The good news for select specialty providers treating Medicare beneficiaries in Maryland is that there’s now an alternative to MIPS that delivers financial rewards without the complex reporting requirements. 

Read on to learn more about the financial benefits of enrolling in EQIP for 2022. 

What is EQIP? The Episode Quality Improvement Program (EQIP) is a voluntary shared savings program for specialty providers serving Medicare beneficiaries in Maryland. 

Goal: Demonstrate continuous improvement for select episodes of care. 

What does EQIP measure? 

  1. Cost savings
  2. Quality measures
  3. One performance activity such as Clinical Care Redesign or Beneficiary/caregiver engagement

Who’s eligible? Cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons, gastroenterologists, general surgeons, orthopaedic surgeons, and neurosurgeons treating Maryland Medicare beneficiaries.

Enrollment period: July 9 – September 1, 2021.*

Benefits of EQIP compared to other incentive programs 

It’s likely your practice is already spending considerable time, money, and resources to participate in required and voluntary programs — including MIPS, BPCI-Advanced, and CJR.

With such a heavy operational lift, many providers are frustrated by the low ROI from existing incentive programs. EQIP is a powerful alternative that will help your practice reap financial benefits without the complex quality reporting requirements. 

Financial incentives: 

  • Eligible providers who enroll in the program will automatically become qualified APM providers and receive a 5% lump sum bonus for MIPS.  
  • Demonstrate continuous improvement for three quality measures and share in the cost savings.

Only upside-risk: Unlike MIPS, for performance year one, there is no financial penalty or reduction in payment based on performance. 

Stable target price: The target price for providers who participate in EQIP during performance year one will remain the same for the subsequent three years of participation. This means you can soak up the maximum savings for three years. 

Another challenge providers face with existing incentive programs is no clear path to improve the quality metrics being measured — not so with EQIP. 

Implementing Ayva, an easy-to-use digital health tool for your patients, can help your practice meet the required Performance Activities to increase your shared savings revenue.

Here’s how: 

  • Increase medication adherence with daily reminders and check-ins.
  • Deliver educational materials in the format most easily understood by your patients and their caregivers.
  • Share videos about how to effectively clean incisions to reduce complications that may lead to costly readmissions.
  • Enable patients to report on progress and compliance with post-op care plans, which helps care teams determine if interventions are necessary.

Don’t delay — enroll in EQIP today

What are you waiting for? The deadline to apply is September 1, 2021.*  

Our team can help you enroll in EQIP and provide you with an actionable plan to maximize the financial rewards with Ayva.

Contact us today to get started. 

*Note: Enrollment deadline is 11:59 PM EST on August 31, 2021. 

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