American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

NewsScope: July 12, 2019

2018 MIPS Performance Feedback and Final Score Now Available

Surgeons who submitted Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) data in 2018 now are able to view their performance feedback, MIPS final score, and associated 2020 payment adjustment information by logging into the Quality Payment Program (QPP) Portal on the QPP website.

The maximum negative adjustment applied to Medicare payments in 2020 will be –5.0 percent, while the maximum positive payment adjustment will be +1.68 percent, which includes the exceptional performance bonus. Any MIPS-eligible clinician, group, or virtual group, including those providers participating in Alternative Payment Models (APMs) who believe there are errors in their 2020 MIPS payment adjustment factors calculations, may request that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) conduct a targeted review until September 30, 2019. A targeted review request can be submitted via the QPP portal. CMS notes that requesting physician may need to provide additional documentation to support these requests, and, if approved, final scores and/or associated payment adjustments will be updated as soon as is technically feasible.

More information about the 2018 MIPS Performance Feedback and targeted review can be found in the frequently asked questions and targeted review fact sheet (both downloadable PDFs). Contact for additional information. 

Palliative Care and Hospice Education and Training Legislation Introduced in Senate

The Palliative Care and Hospice Education and Training Act (PCHETA), S. 2080, was introduced in the U.S. Senate July 10 by Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV). This legislation focuses on training the health care professional workforce in palliative care and is a companion bill to H.R. 647, which was introduced in January and has nearly 250 bipartisan cosponsors in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The American College of Surgeons (ACS) Commission on Cancer (CoC) is of the view that palliative care plays an important role in improving the quality of life for cancer patients and their families. However, not all palliative care programs have the interdisciplinary teams necessary to provide comprehensive, high-quality care. Hence, the ACS supports H.R. 647/S. 2080 and urges members of Congress to cosponsor this important legislation that has the potential to improve the quality of life for those suffering from serious and complex chronic conditions.

For further information on this legislation, contact Amelia Suermann, ACS Congressional Lobbyist, at

2019 ACS Quality and Safety Conference Starts July 19—Register NowACS Quality and Safety Conference

Health care professionals dedicated to raising the bar on the quality of surgical care and patient safety are invited to attend the American College of Surgeons (ACS) 2019 Quality and Safety Conference. The conference will take place July 19–22 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC.

Sessions at this year’s conference will include content from the many established ACS Quality Programs, including Cancer, the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP™), the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP®), and Children’s Surgery. There will also be additional tracks and sessions for those interested in Quality Improvement (QI) Principles and Tools, the Geriatric Surgery Verification Quality Improvement Program (to be unveiled for the first time at the 2019 Conference), and a list of important and emerging topics including the following:

  • Value improvement
  • Bundled care
  • Global health
  • Change management
  • Leadership principles
  • Team dynamics
  • Strong for Surgery
  • Enhanced recovery
  • Emergency general surgery
  • Transplantation
  • New ACS Quality Programs

The Keynote Speaker is Rana L. Awdish, MD, an intensive care physician at Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, MI. Dr. Awdish will share her amazing journey from near death to recovery as well as the passion she has for improving the patient experience. Her story includes her lessons learned from being both a physician and a patient and how her experience as a patient shaped her approach as a provider.

Details about the conference can be viewed online.

Join ACS and HBS Leaders July 19 for Unveiling of New THRIVE Initiative

Fellows of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) are well aware of the challenges that stand in the way of expanding access to care and providing innovative treatments to surgical patients—quality, cost, and interoperability. The ACS and the Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness at Harvard Business School (HBS) have collaborated to develop a path forward and will host an exclusive event July 19 in Washington, DC, to introduce THRIVE: Transforming Health care Results by Investing in Value and Excellence. The session will take place 9:30−11:00 am Eastern time at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center prior to the ACS Quality and Safety Conference.

Speakers at the event will describe the ACS and HBS THRIVE approach and specific strategies for introducing a workable plan to shape the nation’s health care system into the model all health care professionals want and their patients deserve—one that emphasizes value over volume.

Leaders of the Preconference Session are as follows:

  • David B. Hoyt, MD, FACS, ACS Executive Director
  • Robert S. Kaplan, senior fellow and Marvin Bower Professor of Leadership Development, emeritus, HBS
  • Clifford Y. Ko, MD, MS, MSHS, FACS, Director, ACS Division of Research and Optimal Patient Care
  • Frank G. Opelka, MD, FACS, Medical Director, ACS Quality and Health Policy
  • Mary L. Witkowski, MD, MBA, fellow, Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness, HBS

Registration and networking opportunities begin at 8:30 am. To reserve your seat for this important preconference program, e-mail