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CMS Releases 2011 Data on Primary Care Incentive Program
Family Physicians, General Internists Receive Bulk of PCIP Payments
By News Staff
In terms of actual participation numbers and dollar amounts, 61,728 family physician practices received nearly $213 million from the PCIP program in 2011 compared to 55,329 general internist offices that received nearly $280 million. Nearly 2,200 pediatric offices received about $1.7 million from the program in 2011, and 1,391 geriatricians got 1.7 percent of the funds.
The PCIP program, which was created by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, requires Medicare to pay primary care providers, whose primary care billings comprise at least 60 percent of their total Medicare allowed charges, a quarterly 10-percent bonus from Jan. 1, 2011, until the end of December 2015.
AAFP leaders urged CMS to release the data during a meeting with CMS officials in February and in a follow-up letter (2-page PDF; About PDFs) to CMS Administrator Marilyn Tavenner, M.A. In the letter, AAFP Board Chair Roland Goertz, M.D., M.B.A., of Waco, Texas, told Tavenner that CMS was missing an important opportunity to showcase the PCIP by failing to provide data on the program.
"We urge CMS to continue to highlight the law's practical effect on primary care physicians by immediately releasing aggregate PCIP data," Goertz said.
Goertz also noted PCIP data play an important role in efforts to replace the sustainable growth rate formula and address the current payment discrepancies between primary care physicians and medical subspecialists.