"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

Cinqueonce Named COO for MN Community Measurement

MNCM welcomed new Chief Operating Officer Liz Cinqueonce to the staff in October. Cinqueonce has more than 20 years of experience in organizational management, health policy and government affairs.

Prior to MNCM, Cinqueonce served as Executive Director of Southern Prairie Community Care, a 12-county joint powers organization that operates a Minnesota Integrated Health Partnership focused on improving quality and managing total cost of care for more than 28,000 enrollees in Minnesota Health Care Programs; and a State-certified Health Information Organization marketed statewide as CareTrac.

She previously served as executive vice president of the Minnesota Pharmacists Association after years of service as vice president of public affairs. Her experience includes five years in state government management, including positions in the Office of Health Information Technology and the Health Economics Program at the Minnesota Department of Health and in the Performance Management and Quality Improvement Division at the Minnesota Department of Human Services.

Cinqueonce succeeds Tina Frontera in the COO role. Frontera, will continue at MNCM as a Senior Consultant until her retirement at the conclusion of 2017.


MNCM and the NQF Measure Incubator

In 2017, MNCM joined the National Quality Forum (NQF) Measure Incubator to lead a measure testing project on a project to examine a chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patient-reported outcome performance measure (PRO-PM). This project is expected to be active until June 2019. The NQF Measure Incubator is an innovative effort that facilitates efficient measure development and testing through collaboration and partnership. It addresses important aspects of care for which quality measures are underdeveloped or non-existent. Learn more at:


Applications Sought for Measurement and Reporting Committee (MARC)

[UPDATE: The deadline for this round of MARC applications has ended.]

MNCM’s Measurement and Reporting Committee (MARC) will have openings for several new members beginning February 2018. Members are being sought for the following positions:

  • Consumer (two openings)
  • Medical Group – Medium Metro (one opening)
  • Medical Group – Large Metro (two openings)
  • Medical Group – Single Specialty (one opening)

New Members will replace current members whose terms end in December 2017. In addition to filling the criteria noted above, other information that will be considered includes measurement and quality improvement experience, race and ethnic diversity and background in nursing or as another member of the care team. MNCM is interested in recruiting new members, so a variety of community stakeholders have an opportunity to serve on this important committee.

The MARC is a committee of the MNCM Board of Directors with a broad membership of community stakeholders. The committee’s purpose is to recommend measurement priorities and specifications to the Board and to recommend guiding principles and/or policies for MNCM’s public reporting of measures. The MARC is supported by Measure Development Work Groups established by MNCM staff at the direction of the MARC. Work groups are charged with recommending draft measurement specifications and data collection plans.

This committee meets monthly. Members are required to attend/actively participate in at least 75 percent of meetings. Each member serves a two-year term, and has a three-term limit. MARC members may also be asked to serve on a Measure Development Work Group.

If interested, click on the link below to complete an application by the close of business on Thursday, October 19, 2017:

Submit application to Anne Snowden, Director of Performance Measurement, Validation and Reporting at

After nominations have closed, MNCM staff will convene a committee to review applications and make selections with a goal to appoint new members by early November after which all applicants and those selected as new members will be notified.


MNCM Registry Services

The Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) is coming. Please take the time to review the MN Community Measurement Qualified Clinical Data Registry (QCDR) content at this link. Now is the time to ask questions, seek answers and prepare for MIPS and specifically the Quality Payment Program (QPP). Whether your medical group is new to quality reporting or participated in PQRS previously, you are encouraged to connect with MNCM!


MNCM Webinar Outlines QPP and MIPS

A webinar introduction of the new Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) under Medicare’s Quality Payment Program (QPP) hosted and recorded by MN Community Measurement has been posted online for viewing and review. The webinar informs viewers about QPP and MIPS reporting and is available at this link under the Learn More section. MNCM encourages those interested to check back at this link periodically as the page will be updated with new and helpful definitions, links, future webinars and other useful information.


MNCM Annual Seminar Draws 300+ To Share Best Practices

The MN Community Measurement Annual Seminar 2017, held on September 13, began with insight from journalist and local broadcasting legend Don Shelby (picture at right) and continued throughout the day with astute discussions, interactive breakout sessions, useful education, ideas and best practices.

Morning speakers included Tim Hernandez, MD, MNCM Board Chair, Don Shelby, new MNCM President Julie Sonier, a panel on health equity featuring moderators Daniel Trajano, MD, and Gaye Adams Massey and panelists Clarence Jones with Southside Community Health Services, Matt Flory with the American Cancer Society and Molly Duerr with the American Diabetes Association. The final morning speaker was National Quality Forum President and CEO Shantanu Agrawal, MD (picture below) with perspectives on the national quality measurement scene and the current view of health reform from Washington, DC.

SAVE THE DATE: Hold September 12, 2018 and plan to attend the Annual Seminar 2018!

A brief power outage at the event center dimmed the lights momentarily before Jennifer DeCubellis and Ross Owen illuminated the room with insight into the cross system measurement and approach used to improve community health in the state’s largest and most diverse county, Hennepin County, in the bonus lunch plenary session.

Interactive and informational breakout sessions began the afternoon. The three breakouts were repeated for the convenience of attendees so that any one attendee could attend and participate in the two breakout sessions that best matched and met their interests. The sessions were:

  • Patient Experience – Disparities and Community Efforts with presenters Lois Brown of the Indian Health Board of Minneapolis, JooHee Pomplun a consultant with the Hmong American Partnership and Dina Wellbrock of MNCM.
  • Cost of Care Trends and Strategies with presenters Allan Baumgarten publisher of Baumgarten’s Health Market Reviews and Gunnar Nelson of MNCM.
  • Measurement On-a-Stick Development, Process & Alignment with presenters Anne Snowden, Collette Pitzen and Amy Krier of MNCM.

The final afternoon session was an engaging plenary panel titled, “In the New World-The Impact of Variation.” The variation panel was moderated by Daniel Trajano, MD, and featured panelists Sarah Crane MD with Mayo Clinic, Mike Van Scoy MD with Essentia Health and Professor Jon Christianson PhD with the University of Minnesota.

Speaker bios and topics covered can be viewed at the Seminar website

More than 300 participated the Annual Seminar 2017. Attendees represented vastly different roles within health care measurement, quality improvement and a wide variety of practice sizes and environments among providers of various levels and experience. They came from Ely, Fergus Falls and Rochester, all across the Twin Cities and several from South Dakota, North Dakota and Wisconsin. Feedback from attendees was very positive, with 92% saying that they would attend another MNCM event.

The MNCM Annual Seminar 2018 will be held on September 12, 2018 at the Earle Brown Heritage Center in Brooklyn Center, MN.


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.


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.


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