HIT Experts Deliver Insights in First National MACRA Advisory Council Meeting



HIT Experts Deliver Insights in First National MACRA Advisory Council Meeting

Council sees formation of workgroups and discusses key focus areas

East Windsor, NJ — March 10, 2017 — The National MACRA Advisory Council (MAC) held its first official meeting in February during HIMSS week. The agenda included the formation of workgroups to address specific aspects of Medicare and Medicaid reform, the discussion of upcoming projects and the addition of a new member.

“The MACRA Council is comprised of some of the most experienced and well connected professionals in the industry,” said Sri Bharadwaj, Council member and Director of Information Services, Chief Information Security Officer, UC Irvine Health. “Our newly formed workgroups will allow us to take a deeper dive into all of the issues affecting MACRA, MIPS and the other payment reform programs, helping us fulfill our mission to provide policy and operational guidance to all stakeholders.”

It was Mr. Bharadwaj’s vision that led to the formation of the MAC. The MAC, an independent body with financing and administrative support from SpectraMedix, was created to advance the goals of the MACRA program and provide solutions to challenges that executives, administrators, and clinicians face as they implement its Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and Alternative Payment Model (APM) tracks. The Council also focuses on state Medicaid reform initiatives.

an independent, voluntary body, with financing and administrative support provided by SpectraMedix.

The Council’s four workgroup are:

  • Policy Workgroup – Co-chaired by Karen Bell, MD and David Muntz
  • Technology Workgroup – Co-chaired by Sri Bharadwaj, Charles Aunger and Neil Gomes
  • Finance Workgroup – Co-chaired by Karen Weikel and Drex DeFord
  • Patient & Family Engagement Workgroup – Co-chaired by Christina Caraballo and Dee Cantrell

Key insights from the meeting also include:

  • MIPS is not the end game; APMs should be the goal of a MACRA implementation strategy.
  • Accessing and mapping data is a problem which will persist until there is improved data standardization in healthcare.
  • The MAC will work to create a “MACRA Implementation Maturity Model” to identify key milestones for providers.
  • MACRA dashboards are needed to show progress towards max financial payments under APM.
  • Resistance to change will be the challenge among providers, but the MAC can help mitigate this through best practices education and consulting.

Additionally, the Council welcomed Erik Muther, Managing Director of PHCQA (Pennsylvania Healthcare Quality Alliance) at the Health Care Improvement Foundation located in Philadelphia, PA as its newest member. He brings over 19 years of healthcare experience leading a wide range of quality measurement, process improvement, data analytics and strategic initiatives.

“The MAC has generated a lot of interest and excitement, as evidenced by the many inquires at HIMSS17 and extensive press coverage,” said Mark Stevens, MAC Managing Director, “We will be reaching out to co-chairs next week to establish the path forward for each workgroup and are looking forward to all the great work ahead including the establishment of a MACRA resource library on our website and creating a “MACRA Implementation Maturity Model.”


About SpectraMedix

SpectraMedix partners with hospitals, health systems, provider organizations, health information exchanges and payers to improve care delivery and support their transition to value-based payment models. Our industry leading SpectraMedix 360™ Platform, powered by the eMeasures360™ quality management and eureQa360™ population health intelligence solutions, provides advanced data integration, quality measurement and population health analytics capabilities to implement initiatives including the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), Medicaid reform programs, Clinically Integrated Networks, ACOs, financial risk modeling, bundled payments and electronic clinical quality measures.


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MACRA Resources

Want to learn more about MACRA, MIPS and APMs and how to prepare? Access these educational resources:

White Paper: Simplifying MIPS

Webinar eBook: Simplifying MIPS and APMs

SpectraMedix Blog: Preparing for MACRA and MIPS: The Time Is Now

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