Wednesday, June 17, 2009

AMA Does Not Pass Profiling Resolution This Year

A previous blog (see Sunday 6/14) post here focused on Resolution 710 for the AMA Annual Meeting this week in Chicago. The following is from their Reports/Resolutions on their website:


Mr. Speaker, your Reference Committee recommends that
Resolutions 710 not be adopted.

Resolution 710 asks that our AMA ask its CPT Editorial Panel to investigate for data collection and report back at Annual 2010 meeting:

1) developing a modifier for the E&M codes to identify non-compliant patients and/or
2) develop an add-on code to E&M codes to identify non-compliant patients.

Your Reference Committee heard limited supportive testimony on Resolution 710. The author stated that the intent of this resolution is to identify non-compliant patients, especially as there is an increasing focus on physician performance and releasing of physician data. Testimony was empathetic to the difficulty in working with non-compliant patients, but expressed concerns in labeling patients and acknowledged a desire to be sensitive to the possible mental health issues of non-compliant patients.

Testimony provided by the CPT Editorial Board stated that the appropriate forum for addressing CPT issues is through the CPT Editorial Panel process, not the House of Delegates. In addition, while there are no codes that exist to identify someone as specifically non-compliant, there are existing modifiers to identify patients who do not comply. For example, Modifier 2P (Performance Measure Exclusion Modifier Due to Patient Reasons) is available to report non-compliant patients. The list of reasons for Modifier 2P include (1) “patient declined”, (2) “economic, social, or religious reasons”, and (3) “other patient reasons”.This modifier is intended to be used with performance measure Category II codes. CPT Category II Performance Measurement codes are intended to facilitate data collection about the quality of care rendered by coding certain services and test results that support nationally established performance measures and that have an evidence base as contributing to quality patient care. These codes describe clinical components that may be typically included in evaluation and management services or clinical services and, therefore, do not have a relative value associated with them. Given that there exists an appropriate avenue to code for non-compliant patients and that this issue should be directly addressed through the CPT Editorial Panel, your Reference Committee recommends that Resolution 710 not be adopted.
Is there any person or organization watching the AMA or ACOG regarding their policies especially toward expectant/new parents? Is there a system of checks and balances?

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