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The ISMA explains how you can earn extra dollars
e-Reports, May 16, 2011
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The ISMA has received calls asking for clarification about bonuses for electronic prescribing and incentive payments for primary care physicians from Medicare. Here is what you need to know.

Electronic prescribing

You can receive an incentive payment of 1 percent if you submit a total of 25 electronic prescriptions during the 2011 calendar year, explained Jeri Biedenkopf, R.N., ISMA practice advisor. However, you must submit at least 10 electronic prescriptions during the first six months of 2011, or you will incur a 1 percent penalty in 2012.

“It only takes a few electronic prescriptions to receive an incentive payment,” noted Biedenkopf. “The payments will increase each year, so I think it’s worth the time.”

To be a successful prescriber, you must have a qualified e-prescribing system that is able to:

  • Generate a complete active medication list incorporating electronic data from applicable pharmacies and pharmacy benefit managers
  • Select medications, print prescriptions, electronically transmit prescriptions and conduct all alerts
  • Provide information related to lower cost, therapeutically appropriate alternatives
  • Provide information on formulary or tiered formulary medications, patient eligibility, and authorization requirements received electronically from the patient’s drug plan, if available

It is not too late to participate in the e-prescribing program. For details, go to the CMS website.

Incentives for primary care

As part of the Accountable Care Act, Medicare is distributing a 10 percent primary care bonus for 2011. The payments are paid on a quarterly basis.

“Physicians do not need to take any action to receive these incentive payments,” said Biedenkopf. “The payments are based on Medicare claims data. Practices that have called the ISMA have been pleased to get the bonuses.”

Find a list of codes and criteria for the bonus here.

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