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Topics: carotid stenosis, ischemic stroke, screening
Medicine and Public Issues | 
Michelle K. Koltov, MPH; and Nitin S. Damle, MD
The U.S. health care system is in the midst of transforming from a fee-for-service system to a value-based system that delivers high-quality and cost-effective care. Quality reporting programs and increasing transparency of performance are meant to encourage physicians and hospitals to invest in improving the delivery of care. In 2006, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services implemented the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS). The PQRS is an incentive and penalty payment program for eligible professionals who report data on quality measures for covered professional services furnished to Medicare beneficiaries. The program gives eligible professionals the opportunity to assess the quality of care they are providing to their patients and compare their performance on a given measure with their peers. This article discusses the history of PQRS, the 2014 PQRS, and how it affects other quality programs.
Topics: physician quality reporting system, health policy
On 30 April 2014, the Medicare Evidence Development & Coverage Advisory Committee convened to weigh the evidence for low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) screening for lung cancer. Many were shocked by the outcome: a vote of low confidence about whether the benefits of LDCT screening would outweigh harms among Medicare beneficiaries in a community setting. This commentary discusses potential strategies to implement lung cancer screening with LDCT in a responsible manner that avoids overzealous screening.
Topics: lung cancer, lung cancer screening, low-dose spiral ct
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