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For MGMA16 Attendees, MACRA Will Steal the Show


The final MACRA rule was released a few weeks ago. Not surprisingly, MGMA16 plans to provide attendees a lot of information on the subject.

Welcome to the latest edition of the Physicians Practice Pearls Podcast. In this podcast, we'll aim to bring you some of the most interesting, influential guests in the healthcare industry. If you have any ideas for podcast guests or topics, shoot us an email at editor@physicianspractice.com.


We're headed to San Francisco and the annual Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) conference.

For this week's Pearls podcast, we speak with Anders Gilberg, senior vice president of government affairs for the MGMA. Gilberg previewed the conference for us, talking about which sessions will cover what practices need to do to comply with Medicare and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) in 2017 and beyond.

With MACRA final rule having just dropped, Gilberg says MGMA and conference attendees will benefit from perfect timing. "We knew it would be a hot topic, we just didn't know when the rule would drop. Fortunately, it came out a few weeks before the conference. So going into this conference we did lay the foundation a whole track for attendees to participate called 'Under the MACRAscope,'" he said.

This MACRA track will include coverage on the various soon-to-be mandatory components of the law, over the course of three days. On Monday, Oct. 31 and Tuesday, Nov. 1, there will be sessions on MACRA's Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) pathway, which will affect most physicians starting next year. The first day will cover the quality, cost, and practice improvement activities of MIPS, and on Tuesday morning, there will be a session on the health IT provisions. Later on Tuesday, there will also be a session of the Advanced Alternative Payment Model (APM) pathway from MACRA. Furthermore, there will be a general Q&A session on Wednesday Nov. 2 to discuss all regulatory compliance mandates that physicians are facing as well as how the election may affect their practice.

"I think it will be the most timely issue at this year's conference," Gilberg predicts.

Those that can't attend this year's show but still need information on MACRA won't be left out, says Gilberg. He says MGMA will host a webinar on MACRA in early December and are setting up a Q&A with CMS officials.

For those attending the show, Gilberg says he hopes they leave the conference with a better sense of knowing the path forward with MACRA in 2017 and beyond. In particular, he plans on stressing the reduced measures required for next year. "In 2017, the rules have been mitigated that you have to do something that you just have to do something. We'll be encouraging every practice to do something. If you do something in 2017 to report quality, you'll insulate your practice from any penalties," Gilberg says.

More MGMA16 coverage from Physicians Practice can be found here.


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