MNCM News

"The two words ‘information’ and ‘communication’ are often used interchangeably, but they signify quite different things. Information is giving out; communication is getting through." -- Sydney J. Harris

2018 Reporting Changes: Colorectal Cancer Screening and Asthma Measures to be added to Cycle A

To better align data submission timelines for the Colorectal Cancer Screening and Asthma measures with MIPS requirements, it was necessary to change the dates of service to a calendar year (January – December). For more information about these changes, please click here. These changes not only support medical groups in meeting federal MIPS reporting requirements, but also support health plan reporting requirements. While MNCM recognizes this will require operational changes for medical groups, aligning with the federal programs is necessary for all stakeholders.

Because MIPS reporting requires data submission by March 31 each year,according to the following timelines:

  • Jan 31, 2018: Colorectal Cancer Screening
  • Feb 15, 2018: Optimal Diabetes Care, Optimal Vascular Care, Optimal Asthma Control/Self-Management & Education
  • Feb 28, 2018: Depression Care (DOS 02/01/2017-12/31/2017)

Pre-submission documentation will be requested in December 2017 to allow ample time for data collection.

Drafts of the 2018 registration and data collection guides will be available for download from the MNCM Data Portal Resources tab in September. Measure specification changes will be minimal and relatively straightforward to apply. In particular for the colorectal cancer screening specifications, there will be the expansion of event criteria to include both new and established patient office visits and home visits, and there will be the removal of allowable exclusion for death prior to the end of the measurement period.

Pre-submission forms are being revised for simplification and will be available mid-October. Final versions of the guides will be available in early November (no changes are anticipated). The portal will open for registration on November 1, 2017.

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Retirement of Two Clinical Quality Measures

In June 2017, MNCM’s Measurement and Reporting Committee (MARC) recommended the retirement of two quality measures starting in the 2018 report year:

  • Pediatric Preventive Care Overweight Counseling – This is a process measure that is now topped out with a statewide rate of 90%.
  • Maternity Care Cesarean Section Rate – Although Cesarean section rates have increased significantly over the past 20 years and may be medically necessary in many situations, an appropriate target rate is unknown. The statewide Cesarean section rate of 22% (lower is better) is 3.5 percentage points below the national rate of 25.7% and the statewide rate has been flat for more than three years.
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MNCM Gratefully Acknowledges Seminar Sponsors

The MN Community Measurement (MNCM) Annual Seminar takes place September 13 at the Earl Brown Center in Brooklyn Center (Minneapolis). For event details visit the Seminar website at this link.

MNCM thanks the following organizations for sponsoring the Annual Seminar 2017. It is the support and generosity of these individuals and organizations that support this important quality measurement event.

Gold Sponsors
  • Allina Health
  • Essentia Health
  • HealthPartners Care Group
  • Medica
  • Minnesota Association of County Health Plans
Silver Sponsors
  • Lynn Hassan Jones, MD
  • CentraCare Health
  • Data IQ
  • Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare
  • The Minnesota Health Action Group
  • The Minnesota Hospital Association
  • PreferredOne
Bronze Sponsors
  • The American Cancer Society Minnesota
  • Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota
  • UCare

For more information on these sponsors and sponsorship opportunities with the MNCM Annual Seminar, visit the Seminar sponsorship page at seminar2017.mncm.org/sponsors.

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MNCM Announces MIPS/QPP Webinar Aug 17

MN Community Measurement (MNCM) will be hosting a 30 minute webinar on Thursday afternoon, August 17 at 1 p.m. The topic will be an introductory conversation about the upcoming Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) under the Quality Payment Program (QPP).

MNCM was recently named a Qualified Clinical Data Registry (QCDR) and is a CMS-approved entity that collects clinical data on behalf of clinicians for data submission. MNCM is now able to assist clinician group practices in meeting MIPS (formerly PQRS) requirements for the 2017 reporting year. The MNCM QCDR service will seamlessly submit quality measures and improvement activities to CMS.

The webinar is free and those wishing to participate can visit the following link to attend. Please save this link to join the webinar at 1:00 pm on August 17, http://tinyurl.com/y8thyewq

The proven MNCM Direct Data Submission (DDS) reporting platform is currently used by clinics and medical groups for state reporting. The MNCM QCDR is an enhancement of the DDS to help you comply with federal MIPS and MACRA requirements. For more details click HERE.

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Snapshots Provide Preview of Health Care Quality Report Results

As part of ongoing efforts to communicate health care performance results in a timely and user-friendly way, MNCM has created “snapshots” from the 2017 Cycle A and Cycle B measure reporting periods.

These snapshots include Optimal Diabetes Care, Optimal Vascular Care and Depression Care from Cycle A and Adolescent Mental Health and/or Depression Screening and Overweight Counseling from Cycle B that will be published in the Health Care Quality Report, which is anticipated to be released in January 2018.

This information can be used to aid decision making associated with quality improvement efforts.

In 2017 (2016 Dates of Service), the statewide rate for Optimal Diabetes Care is 45 percent and 62 percent for Optimal Vascular Care. The statewide rate for Depression Remission at Six Months is 8 percent. Overweight Counseling is 90 percent and 73 percent for Adolescent Mental Health and/or Depression Screening. Clinic and medical group level results are publicly reported on our consumer website, MNHealthScores.org. The site provides this information in convenient, sortable tables to view, download and/or print.

MNCM appreciates the significant contributions of clinics, medical groups, health plans, hospitals and other professional organizations that provide data to MN Community Measurement. Achieving our mission to accelerate the improvement of health by publicly reporting health care information relies on this collaborative, multi-stakeholder effort. MNCM strives to continue to be the trusted source for performance measurement, data sharing and public reporting locally and nationally.

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Minnesota Patients Pleased with Their Providers, Indicate Room for Improvement in Getting Timely Care in 2017 Patient Experience Survey

2017 Patient Experience Survey Results Released

In the nation’s largest and most comprehensive view of patient experience, 81 percent of Minnesota patients gave their health care provider a top rating of 9 or 10 on a 10-point scale. Two-thirds (66 percent) of patients said they experienced a top level of access to care, defined as patients who say they were able to get appointments, health care and information when they needed it.

“This information is collected directly from patients and based on their own experiences,” said Julie Sonier, President of MN Community Measurement.

Survey results for 767 clinics, separated into five categories, are included in the 2017 Patient Experience of Care Survey published by MN Community Measurement (MNCM). These clinic level survey results are available for the public online at MNHealthScores.org.

“Sharing these results can help patients make quality decisions about their health care and help clinics and medical groups learn what they can do to improve the results,” added Sonier.

The survey measures patient experience in five categories, in terms of whether patients were:

  • getting care when needed (“Access to Care”)
  • receiving coordinated care defined by asking patients how often providers knew their medical history, followed up to give results of tests and asked about prescription medications being taken (“Care Coordination”)
  • satisfied with their provider (“Provider Rating”)
  • experiencing courteous and helpful office staff (“Office Staff”)
  • being listened to and receiving understandable information and instructions (“Provider Communication”)

“Since MNCM unveiled the state’s first patient experience results in 2013, many clinics have used this information to focus on improving experiences for their patients,” said Sonier. “These results are also used to recognize outstanding service and health care satisfaction for clinics and medical groups.”

Though patients are generally reporting positive experience, the latest survey does show significant differences between clinics. Here are some highlights from the survey:

  • 66 percent of respondents said they had top-level Access to Care. Individual clinics have results ranging from 33 to 91 percent.
  • 73 percent of respondents gave their clinic the most positive rating possible when asked about Care Coordination. Across individual clinics, the low score was 49 percent and the high score was 87 percent.
  • 81 percent of respondents gave their provider a top rating of 9 or 10 on a 10-point Provider Rating scale. Individual clinics ranged from 46 to 94 percent of providers receiving a top rating.
  • 83 percent of respondents gave the office staff at their clinics top marks for being respectful and helpful. A 35 percentage difference is noted between the highest and lowest rated clinics.
  • 86 percent of respondents described communication from their providers as top-level. Across individual clinics, the low score was 59 percent and the high score was 96 percent.

One clinic, Surgical Consultants in Edina, MN ranked in the top 15 performers across 4 of 5 survey categories. Three clinics, Gunderson Health System in La Crescent, MN, Minnesota Oncology in Fridley, MN and Essentia Health Pillager Clinic in Pillager, MN ranked in the top 15 performers across 3 of 5 survey categories. For additional information on top performers, click here.

Results by Region

A regional analysis, based on the patient’s zip code, shows that among the five categories, patients in Northeast Minnesota rated all five categories significantly above the statewide average. Conversely, patients in Minneapolis rated all five categories significantly below the statewide average. Patients in the Twin Cities area are less satisfied with Care Coordination as this category was rated significantly below the statewide average for patients in Minneapolis, St. Paul, West Metro and East Metro.

Further analysis of the five categories within the 2017 Patient Experience of Care Survey examining race, ethnicity and region will be published in the forthcoming Health Equity of Care Report scheduled to be released by MNCM in December 2017.

About the Survey

Results are from the more than 180,000 patient-completed surveys on patient experience of care, known as the Clinician & Group Surveys Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CG-CAHPS® 3.0) survey. This is the third time that MNCM has conducted the Patient Experience of Care Survey. Twenty-nine percent of the patients surveyed responded, which is a similar response rate compared to previous years. Although the survey was completed previously in 2013 and 2015, trending and direct comparisons to previous year results are not recommended due to modifications to the questionnaire.

The data are collected as part of Minnesota’s Statewide Quality Reporting and Measurement System. The Minnesota Department of Health partners with MNCM to collect the data, and MNCM reports results on MNHealthScores.org. Individual clinics are also given access to more detailed analysis on their survey results to see where they are performing well, and identify areas for improvement. A small number of clinics in border communities in Iowa, North Dakota and Wisconsin that see Minnesota patients also chose to voluntarily submit results to MNCM.

About Us

MN Community Measurement is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving health by publicly reporting health care information. A trusted source of health care data and public reporting on quality, cost and patient experience since 2003, MNCM works with medical groups, health plans, employers, consumers and state agencies to spur quality improvement, reduce health care costs and maximize value. Learn more at MNCM.org.

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MNCM named CMS registry; can help with QPP/MIPS reporting requirements

MNCM has been named a Qualified Clinical Data Registry (QCDR) by CMS for the upcoming Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) under the Quality Payment Program (QPP). A QCDR is a CMS-approved entity that collects clinical data on behalf of clinicians for data submission.

MNCM is now able to assist clinician group practices in meeting MIPS (formerly PQRS) requirements for the 2017 reporting year. The MNCM QCDR service will seamlessly submit quality measures and improvement activities to CMS.

The proven MNCM Direct Data Submission (DDS) reporting platform is familiar to many and is currently used by clinics and medical groups for state reporting. The MNCM QCDR is an enhancement of the DDS to help you comply with federal MIPS and MACRA requirements.

Simplify your reporting needs with MNCM. For details on timing, list of approved measures and more, click here.

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Annual Seminar Registration Open

Act now and register for the MN Community Measurement Annual Seminar 2017. Join this dynamic event and hear Hall of Fame television and radio broadcaster Don Shelby, National Quality Forum President and CEO Shantanu Agrawal, MD, from Washington, DC and attend panel discussions and unique interactive breakouts. Review the full agenda here.

Join the influential leaders of clinics, medical groups, health plans, social service and leading community groups as we discuss and share ideas and best practices on quality measurement, quality improvement, health equity and much more.

In addition to keynote speakers Don Shelby and Dr. Shantanu Agrawal, attend discussions on health equity and regional variation in diagnostic intensity coding. Participate in unique breakouts on patient experience, total cost of care, measure development, process and alignment.

Date & Time: Wednesday, September 13, 2017, 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Venue: Earle Brown Heritage Center, 6155 Earle Brown Drive, Brooklyn Center (Minneapolis), MN 55430

Attendees who complete an event evaluation will be issued a Certificate of Attendance suitable for continuing education or attendance hour credit following the Annual Seminar. This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of HealthPartners Institute and MN Community Measurement. HealthPartners Institute is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The Office of Continuing Medical Education, HealthPartners Institute, designates this live activity for a maximum of 6.75 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Visit seminar2017.mncm.org for more details. See you in September!

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Results from Patient Experience Survey to be Released Soon

Do you know what percentage of Minnesotans rated their doctor a 9 or 10 out of 10 in our patient experience survey? You will soon because patient experience measurements, including regional, race and clinic level analysis of patient reported results from the 2017 Patient Experience of Care Survey will be published by MN Community Measurement (MNCM) in early August.

Results from the more than 180,000 patient-completed surveys on patient experience of care, known as the Clinician & Group Surveys Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CG-CAHPS® 3.0) survey, from 767 clinics will be available for the public online at MNHealthScores.org. This is the third time that MNCM has conducted the Patient Experience of Care Survey, and it is the nation’s largest statewide CAHPS patient experience survey.

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Stratis Health Offers MIPS Estimator, Find Your Highest MIPS Score

Make your plan to succeed in the Quality Payment Program (QPP). Use the free Stratis Health MIPS Estimator to determine which measures and data submission methods give you the highest baseline Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) composite score.

Stratis Health is currently developing the MIPS Estimator as an online application that will aggregate a group’s data once individual data is entered. Release is planned for August. But, you don’t have to wait. Click here to Download the MIPS Estimator Prerelease Excel spreadsheet.

For assistance with QPP or the Stratis Health MIPS Estimator, email the QPP Help Desk (QPPHelp@stratishealth.org).

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