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US Wound Registry Announces Acceptance as Qualified Clinical Data Registry by CMS

The Woodlands, TX, May 08, 2014 --( The U.S. Wound Registry (USWR), the most experienced of the Medicare physician quality reporting registries, announced today that it has been accepted as a Qualified Clinical Data Registry (QCDR) by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The USWR has performed quality reporting to CMS on behalf of eligible providers (EPs) since the beginning of the program in 2008. PQRS is a CMS program that uses a combination of incentive payments and penalties to promote reporting of quality information by EPs. The importance of the QCDR program is that it allows the USWR to actually develop its own quality measures for EPs, rather than being limited to the ones provided by CMS.

The USWR partnered with the Alliance of Wound Care Stakeholders to craft 12 new quality measures which reflect appropriate care of patients with conditions such as diabetic foot ulcers and venous leg ulcers. Clinicians who report at least nine measures in 2014 will be eligible for a 0.5% bonus to their total Medicare payments in 2016. After 2014, clinicians who fail to report will be at risk for reductions in their Medicare payments. According to the USWR Executive Director, Dr. Caroline Fife, physicians practicing wound care have been frustrated with the lack of relevant measures within the PQRS program. “We tried for many years to get new wound care quality measures into the PQRS system. With the QCDR program, the USWR has helped to develop measures on behalf of the clinicians whose data we report. In conjunction with the Alliance of Wound Care Stakeholders which represents many medical professional societies, we have created 12 new measures which reflect quality practice.”

These measures can be reported from ANY electronic health record (EHR) that is certified under the first stage of “Meaningful Use.” CMS has made it clear that the QCDR program is intended to be “vendor neutral” when it comes to EHRs. The goal is to get as many EPs as possible sharing quality data and reporting their patient outcomes so that it is possible to understand the value of medical interventions in affecting patient outcome. Importantly, the USWR also included a “patient reported outcome” specifically; the “wound quality of life” tool to better understand the impact that having a chronic non-healing wound has on the day to day life of a patient.

“The USWR has been committed to quality practice since 2008 when we started the “Do the Right ThingTM” initiative to get physicians to implement proper diabetic foot ulcer off-loading and venous ulcer compression bandaging as well as screening for arterial disease. We have used USWR data to show where physicians were missing opportunities to do a better job of patient care, and how quality relates to better patient outcomes. We also worked with the Institute for Clinical Outcomes to develop the Wound Healing Index (WHI), a mathematical model to stratify patients by their level of illness. It is a huge breakthrough. Stratification of patient risk factors is required for reporting data through the QCDR because some doctors take care of sicker patients so we need a way to level the playing field when we report their success rates. If you or your loved one has a chronic non-healing wound, you want to go to a clinician participating in quality reporting through the USWR. It means that they are sharing their quality data with their peers across the USA, and working hard to ‘Do the Right Thing.”

More information on the US Wound Registry as well as the 12 new quality measures for wound care can be accessed at the USWR website at:
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US Wound Registry
Ginger Tolar

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