Physicians question CMS P4P effort

Though it hasn't started yet, physicians are already questioning whether CMS's pay-for-performance program will work over the long term. Physician critics say that many practices won't have the time, resources or staff to begin quality reporting. To get the 1.5 percent bonus, physicians will be asked to report on 74 measures for claims between July 1st and December 31st. To make this happen, it's likely that the practices will have to upgrade their IT infrastructure, a step which can be complex and expensive. That being said, the concerns may be premature. Politics watchers say that the new Democratic leadership in Congress may decide to rewrite the Republican-backed program--or at least rescind the 10 percent Medicare cut planned for 2008. Meanwhile, observers note that funding for the P4P program hasn't been approved yet, leading some to speculate that it won't be implemented after all.

To learn more about the debate:
- read this Modern Healthcare article