ImageGuide Registry: Nuclear Cardiology's MACRA Reporting Solution

Nuclear cardiology practices from across the United States are enrolling in ASNC's ImageGuide Registry, a decision that positions them to fulfill Medicare's new reporting requirements and advance their quality-improvement goals, all while making few administrative changes and, for ASNC members, incurring no new costs.  
Your Reporting Requirement Solution 
“Are we ready for MACRA?” That's the question on the minds of many cardiologists and practice administrators since the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) Final Rule—a vast compilation of regulations that will use performance data submitted as early as 2017 to calculate the financial rewards, or penalties, that practices will earn starting in 2019. “The key message from the MACRA regulations is that clinicians need to begin reporting on qualifying performance measures and clinical practice improvement activities that fulfill MACRA's requirements, and we all need to get started as soon as possible,” says ASNC President Brian G. Abbott, MD, MASNC.

“The ImageGuide Registry provides nuclear cardiologists with a unique solution for completing MACRA's reporting requirements while advancing the field's goals of improving laboratory efficiency, optimizing patient radiation exposure, minimizing downstream costs and improving patient care,” explains Peter L. Tilkemeier, MD, FASNC, chair of ASNC's Registry Oversight Committee and lead author of ASNC's forthcoming revisions to the nuclear cardiology reporting standards document. 

ImageGuide is the nation's first national registry for noninvasive cardiac imaging and the first registry of its kind to earn Medicare's Qualified Clinical Data Registry (QCDR) designation. The QCDR designation is what will help nuclear cardiologists and their teams reap big rewards relatively quickly. Here's how: 
  1. Participation in a QCDR helps fulfill mandatory requirements for any physician enrolled in MACRA's Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS). ImageGuide enrollment is currently free for ASNC members, giving members a relatively simple and free solution to one of the law's more cumbersome mandates.
  2. Enrollment in ImageGuide, a QCDR, means a smaller reporting obligation. The current reporting mandate is 50 percent of studies per year.  ImageGuide's specific focus on SPECT and PET tests reduces the burden to reporting only on the cases that include nuclear imaging tests. “Fifty percent of all the patients you see in the office in a year is a big number,” explains Dr. Tilkemeier. “Fifty percent of the nuclear cardiology studies you performed in a year is a much smaller, manageable number that gets you to the same end game of your increased payment based on your quality performance relative to your Medicare dollars.”  
  3. ImageGuide automatically transmits quality measures data to CMS and calculates quality measure rates for providers in the MIPS program, so clinicians can stay on top of their performance throughout the year and address performance issues before the end of the reporting period.

Your Quality, Safety, Efficiency Solution 
Reduced hassle and costs aside, the ImageGuide Registry solutions provide value that keeps on giving. ImageGuide enrollees are able review their own data against benchmark reports as well as standardized location, practice and national performance data to identify opportunities for improvement and track progress toward quality-improvement goals. “That's our mission—as a society, as the Nuclear Cardiology community and as individuals who are committed to improving patient care,” emphasizes Dr. Tilkemeier.

ImageGuide Purpose
ImageGuide has already positively impacted patient care, he adds, sharing the example of a practice whose ImageGuide reports revealed to them a small number of technically challenging cases. The practice staff leveraged the granularity of their ImageGuide reports to uncover that the worrisome cases were, first, clustered in one office facility and, second, around a single technologist. “A truly wonderful opportunity for some education regarding how to get better quality studies from that one technologist greatly improved the entire practice and enhanced nuclear cardiology quality,” he says.  

How to Enroll in ImageGuide Registry (for free if you are—or become—an ASNC member!) 
Ready to join ASNC's ImageGuide Registry? Learn more about the benefits of registry participation and get your enrollment underway.

Don't forget! ASNC members are invited to enroll in the ImageGuide Registry at no cost. This is a special benefit of ASNC membership that will be available for a limited time. Learn more about ASNC membership—including the opportunities that come with joining the only professional medical society focused on nuclear cardiology as well as your complimentary registration in ImageGuide.  

ImageGuide Registry: Nuclear Cardiology's Solution Source 
Goal Solution
Relevance: Subspecialty specific   No distractions mean maximizing opportunities for impact: ImageGuide data collection is focused on SPECT and PET.  
Efficiency: Reduce reporting burden   Unlike other registries that require data submission for every patient encounter, ImageGuide requires data collection only for nuclear imaging tests.  
Quality: Value-rich safety and appropriateness targets   ImageGuide allows optimal granularity for quality improvement in nuclear imaging, focusing on variables that support "right test at the right dose at the right time" testing.