Outrunning The MIPS Bear: Promoting Interoperability Category (Article 3 of 5)

Outrunning the MIPS Bear – Article (3 of 5)

MIPS: Promoting Interoperability

You’ve gotta chuckle on this one – Promoting Interoperability. Seriously? Sounds like a condition you don’t want. But ok, let’s promote interoperability! Go team! It rolls right off the tongue! I couldn’t feel more enthused if I wanted to!

As stated in the previous article, there are 4 categories to consider while running away from Da Bear:

1) Quality
2) Promoting Interoperability (PI)
3) Improvement Activities (IA)
4) Cost.


Of the 4, Promoting Interoperability (PI) represents 25% of the final score, second to Quality at 50%: between the 2 categories, that’s 75% of the score. Getting there! Ok, What is the PI portion of this deal?

Once again, straight from the CMS Horse’s mouth/website (qpp.cms.gov), PI is defined as: “Promoting patient engagement and electronic exchange of information using certified electronic health technology (CEHRT)” and “Participants must submit collected data for 4 or 5 Base score measures for 90 days or more during 2018”.

Got it – but wait! A wrinkle! Turns out there are 2 measure sets for submitting data: there’s the

1) PI objectives and measure and then there’s the 2) PI Transition objectives and measures.

So if my EHR is 2014 Certified, I have to use the Transition set; if it’s 2015, I can use either set or any combination of the sets as long as I don’t duplicate an objective from either set. Whatever (why are they trying to make my head hurt?) – I’ll make it easy and go with the Transition set which works in either case.

Let’s explore the measures again at qpp.cms.gov, shall we? Hopefully, I won’t be presented with 275 initial measures, like I was with Quality. I’d like to live in peace if I could, in tune with the harmonies of the universe, not scrambling to maintain my MIPS equilibrium: but alas, such is life: Promoting Interoperability (I’d love to meet the computer nerd who coined that term, see what psychiatric condition he’s got), here I come.

So set the filters to:

1) PI Transition Objectives and Measures and then 2) Base Score, hold my breath and scroll down the page for the results which are:


Score Type Weight Requirement

EHR Documentation process

ePrescribing Base 0% 1 case Medical record>Medications>Prescription writer
Health Information Exchange (HIE) Base 20% 1 case Medical record>Direct Mail module
Provide Patient Access to view, download, transmit (VDT) Base 20% 1 case Healthtracker
Security Risk Analysis Base 0% N/A Self attest


There’s my 4! There’s 2 Base Types that allow me to get up to 25% of the required score for PI – heck, I’ll even be 5% over the requirement. My college hardened son would disapprove: “Dad”, he informed me pityingly, “if they want 80% on the test that’s the score you want to shoot for”. “Son”, I responded, “henceforward I will pay tuition only for those classes in which you receive a 90% or above”. Gotta to keep these kids in line.

However, I digress: Done! Check! PI, step two, handled! Da Bear! Where is ‘Der Bär’, as they say in German? Receding? Do I have my staff on board, workflow in place, making this a habit so that, hey, I can prove my clinic is going above and beyond the call of duty?