The Quality Payment Program (QPP) Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) continues to evolve to meet the needs of participating providers and stakeholders. In 2021, CMS introduced a new reporting framework – MIPS Value Pathways (MVPs) – that will be available beginning in 2023. 

The goal is to move away from siloed reporting of measures and activities towards focused sets of measures and activities that are more meaningful to a clinician’s practice, specialty, or public health priority. How can participating providers prepare for this change?  

Enter Telligen’s own QPP MVP, Moira Marzen. Moira is a QPP subject-matter expert and shares important information about the future of MIPS, MVPs, and how participants can be set up for success in the evolving program. Meet Moira Marzen.

Describe your role at Telligen.

Telligen provides national Customer and Program Support Services for the QPP. My primary role is to serve as our team’s subject-matter expert on everything related to the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), which can be a daunting task given the complexity and changing requirements of the program. Most of my day-to-day activities relate to MIPS program communication – developing, reviewing and editing educational materials and website content for MIPS program participants and stakeholders; helping our customer service representatives respond to complicated questions from participating stakeholders; and working with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to ensure that the information we distribute is both accurate and responsive to stakeholder needs and questions. I also do quite a bit of policy research to support other Quality Payment Program (QPP) contractors and the work that they do.  

Describe your background. How does your QPP expertise support Telligen’s work? 

For the last 10 years, I have been a CMS contractor supporting quality reporting programs. I’ve been involved with the QPP/MIPS program specifically since the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) was introduced, and previously worked on the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) which is one of the legacy quality reporting programs that folded into MIPS.

From 2012 to 2016, I was a business analyst (and eventually business analyst manager) on PQRS, writing business requirements for CMS systems to receive, calculate and provide feedback on the quality data submitted for PQRS based on policies outlined in each year’s final rule. In 2016, I moved to a new contract supporting MIPS, where I helped the QPP service center and product development teams with communication and implementation of program policies. I was really excited to join the Telligen team in 2017, where I’ve been able to leverage my subject matter expertise with a focus on program communications. 

What do you enjoy most about the QPP work? 

QPP MIPS is a highly complex program with a lot of rules and nuances that can be challenging to navigate. I really like meeting that challenge and breaking down the complexity to help participants understand program policies and requirements. Right now, I’m excited to focus on small practices and create resources that provide the information they need to be successful in the program. I also appreciate the overall mission of the QPP to put patients first by rewarding high-value, high-quality Medicare clinicians.

What do MIPS participants need to know about the future of MIPS? 

MIPS Value Pathways (MVPs) are coming! This is an exciting new framework that will be an optional way for clinicians to meet MIPS reporting requirements beginning in the 2023 performance year. The MVP framework aims to align and connect measures and activities across the various performance categories for different specialties and conditions, such as chronic disease management, rheumatology, and stroke care and prevention. There are seven MVPs currently finalized for reporting in 2023 – participants can learn more about them on the QPP website.

MVPs offer reduced reporting requirements with a smaller, more cohesive subset of measures and activities, and will also provide clinicians with enhanced, comparative performance feedback. Clinicians who don’t have an available and relevant MVP – and those who aren’t quite ready to transition to this new framework – also have the option of continuing to participate in MIPS as they always have, through the traditional MIPS framework. Finally, MVPs offer the opportunity to engage with CMS in developing the future of MIPS. Stakeholders can submit new MVP candidates for CMS’ consideration in future rulemaking. (If you’re interested, you can learn more about this process on the QPP website.) 

More About Moira  

What is something people don’t know about you? 

Before I became a government contractor, I worked in arts and education. My first real job was working at the same nonprofit community art center in Washington, DC, where I took art and dance classes growing up. In my first couple of years, I worked primarily with the after school youth arts program, and I always had a pair of ballet shoes and a smock stowed under my desk because I could count on being pulled in to substitute for drawing, pottery and dance classes at least three times a week.  

What’s the best career lesson you’ve learned? 

I think the most important lesson I’ve learned throughout my career is that a manager who supports and trusts you is worth their weight in gold. I’m lucky to have that at Telligen!