A total of 5,414 physical therapists and occupational therapists in private practice submitted data to the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) for calendar year (CY) 2009, according to a report recently released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) that ranks the top 5 measures submitted by specialty practice areas in CY 2009. Of the non-physician providers, physical therapists and occupational therapists were ranked 6 of 15 in number of providers who submitted PQRS data in CY 2009.
The top 5 measures reported for physical therapists and occupational therapists were: #154 Falls: Risk Assessment; #131 Pain Assessment Prior to Initiation of Patient Therapy and Follow-Up; #130 Documentation and Verification of Current Medications in the Medical Record; #155 Falls: Plan of Care; and #128 Preventive Care and Screening: Body Mass Index (BMI) Screening and Follow-Up. The average performance rating for these measures ranged from 98.44% to 77.10%. Based on national provider figures from CMS, APTA estimates that approximately 10% of all private practice physical therapists participated in PQRS in CY 2009.
PQRS is currently a voluntary program that incentivizes practitioners for participation in quality reporting. In 2012 providers who successfully participate in the program will receive a .5% bonus payment. Beginning in 2015, providers who do not successfully participate will be subject to a financial penalty. However, the proposed CY2012 Physician Fee Schedule Rule released in June outlines CMS' intent to use CY 2013 data to inform penalties in 2015, which if incorporated into the final rule would essentially require providers to participate in 2013 to avoid 2015 penalties.
For more information on PQRS visit APTA's updated PQRS Web page.