Each year, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) releases a summary of practitioner participation in the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) and the eRx Incentive Program. The document contains significant data on these programs and illustrates participation variances among specialties. In its 2012 Reporting Experience Including Trends (2007-2013) report released earlier this year, physician anesthesiologists were among PQRS’s top participants, with 61.3 percent (some 28,318 practitioners) submitting quality data for the program. Physician anesthesiologists’ 2012 numbers were the latest in a steady increase in participation since 2009, when 41.3 percent of physician anesthesiologist eligible professionals (EPs) took part. Other top participating specialties included emergency medicine (68.0 percent), interventional radiologists (58.1 percent), ophthalmology (55 percent) and cardiology (53.5 percent).

The PQRS reporting program combines incentive payments and payment adjustments to promote reporting of quality information by EPs. In 2012, the payment incentive for successfully reporting measures was 0.5 percent,...

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