therapist working at computer

Four Key Takeaways from our MIPS Webinar

In our latest webinar about MIPS, the QPP and future of physical therapy reimbursement, Keet’s President and GM, Holly Taylor, shared her knowledge on what therapists need to do now to take part in MIPS in 2021, set themselves up for success in future value-based programs, and compete on quality. 

[Missed it? Watch the recording here.]

She dove deep on key issues and participants questions alike, discussing:

  • What the proposed cuts in the Medicare Fee Schedule mean for the future of MIPS
  • Why MIPS has less to do with a Medicare bonus and more to do with a long term strategy to grow your practice 
  • Why suggesting MIPS is going away is harmful to our industry and your bottom line
  • How to implement changes focused on value in your clinic

While we’re all feeling the pinch when it comes to Medicare reimbursement, Holly highlighted that there are a number of ways to react. Here are four key takeaways from the discussion:

1. We must accept value-based payment models as the future. 

It’s no longer possible to survive off of the standard reimbursement increases through Medicare. It’s also no longer realistic (or honestly, acceptable) to decry CMS for halting regular reimbursement increases for healthcare providers. Healthcare costs in our country are rising at an untenable rate, and with our country only getting sicker, transitioning to a model that aims to improve the quality and cost-efficiency of care for patients is our only road ahead - plus it’s a good thing for everyone involved. 

Through the creation of the Quality Payment Program, Medicare has provided us with a path for the transition to fee-for-value and the first step of that journey is MIPS, which ties quality performance to reimbursement. By not participating in MIPS or another value-based payment program now, you are only setting yourself up for failure in the transition from fee-for-service to value-based care. If you delay participation, you are effectively robbing yourself of the time and assistance you need to successfully transition to value-based care.

2. What happened to my bonus?

At the risk of sounding cliche, the global pandemic really threw a wrench in things. 

One of those things was the bonus pool for the 2019 MIPS performance year. Right before healthcare providers were required to submit their 2019 data, Medicare provided unprecedented flexibility in helping out healthcare providers and essentially gave everyone a ‘get out of jail free’ card if they needed it. This made it incredibly easy for anyone who knew they wouldn’t perform well to back out - leaving an empty penalty pool. And because MIPS is revenue neutral, this meant there would be no money to fund any bonuses. The bonuses that were doled out for the 2021 payment year came from the exceptional performance pool, which is funded by Congress.  

3. What’s coming in 2021?

You might be pointing out that in years past, over 90% of MIPS participants still received a bonus from Medicare. But those years the performance threshold was much lower and Medicare is only stepping on the gas when it comes to MIPS. 

2021 marks the last year for the exceptional performance bonus, the first year that the performance threshold could split the bonus and payment pool in half, and, most importantly, the last year for voluntary participation in the QPP. 

Additionally, CMS is proposing making changes to the 2021 Medicare Fee Schedule and how the fee schedule adjustments are applied. Check out these slides (slides 9-12 in our deck) for more details. 


4. Physical therapists naturally deliver low cost, high quality care - and now we can prove it

Keet was proud to announce the results of our clients’ hard work in their 2019 MIPS participation. On average, our clients earned a MIPS score of 91.2, 98% of them exceeded the exceptional performance bonus threshold and 24% earned a perfect 100-point score.

2019 was a true learning year for all of us in outpatient rehab who chose to participate in our first year of MIPS eligibility - but boy are we glad that we did it. Granted, there was never a question in our minds that our clients wouldn’t perform well. Physical therapists are natural deliverers of high quality, low cost care - we’re just thrilled that now we have the results to prove it. 

I hope this overview proved helpful and you’ve gotten some useful information on the proposed rule for 2021 and how you can set yourself up for success in value-based programs. Have additional questions? Don’t hesitate to reach out today

P.S.: Missed the live webinar? Watch the recording here.

therapist working at computer

Making Patient Outcomes Intuitive with Keet Health

About ProRehab

ProRehab was founded in 1999 with the vision of providing the highest level of service for their patients. Since that time they’ve grown into a large, regional clinic with 17 locations and over 100 therapists. ProRehab is a clinical education site for a number of university professional programs and many of their clinicians have been adjunct faculty members for professional programs, making the objective measurement of clinical outcomes a high priority for their organization.

“Going all the way back in time, we saw that outcomes solutions were important. In the beginning of ProRehab, we did outcomes on paper and tracked it in a spreadsheet, which is impossible to grow around or sustain.” - Andrea Baumann, COO, ProRehab.

Andrea and the team at ProRehab weren’t satisfied with their current outcomes vendor but knew they couldn’t go back to paper either. Once they started researching, they landed on Keet Health and haven't looked back since. 

Right Strategy, Wrong Vendor

ProRehab was an early adopter of outcomes tracking and saw the need for outcomes data before many in outpatient rehab. 

But their chosen outcomes vendor gave their therapists and patients more hurdles and headaches than help. It also added one more platform to manage in addition to their EHR vendor and Keet, who they used to support their patient engagement strategy. On top of that, their previous vendor required patients to be physically in the clinic to complete their outcomes survey, adding additional administrative burden to their already busy staff. The ProRehab team needed a way to bridge the gap between reducing the time spent on completing outcomes surveys in the clinic and improving patient compliance.

Andrea and the team at ProRehab decided to extend their use of Keet to include outcomes in order to leverage a single platform that would provide their patients the flexibility to efficiently complete tasks both in, and out, of the clinic.

“When physical therapists were announced as eligible MIPS participants for 2019, it was a no brainer for us. We were already tracking outcomes in our clinics and had been using Keet to aid in our patient engagement strategy. That’s when we said goodbye to our existing outcomes vendor and realized, ‘why would we not just do it all in one system? Why are we running out of a couple of different systems?’ Being able to consolidate patient engagement, education, and outcomes into one platform was really a huge driver for us.” - Andrea Baumann.

Additionally, their previous outcomes vendor didn’t offer intuitive outcomes surveys for patients to complete and included features like skip logic which ultimately led to incomplete outcomes surveys and confused patients. When MIPS became a reality for many of the therapists at ProRehab, Andrea and the team knew it was prime time to make a change. 

Bringing outcomes and patient engagement together

Andrea and her team were quite pleased with the solution that Keet offered. Bringing outcomes and patient engagement together allowed the staff at ProRehab to extend their reach beyond clinic walls, foster collaborative care for patients and therapists, and collect patient reported outcomes to assess quality, improve care protocols, and participate in quality payment programs - all from one central platform. 

“It came down to us wanting to take the patient experience to the next level. Engaging the patient across the board, being able to reach them at multiple points during their care plan, and easily run reports so we can improve care plans all at the same time. I mean, the Keet team has been great to work with to help us bring all of our solutions into one package.” - Andrea Baumann

Thanks to an intuitive application interface, straightforward outcomes surveys, education materials and easy to follow video exercises, both patients and therapists alike can’t imagine going back to disparate solutions for patient engagement and outcomes reporting. 

An easy button for MIPS and outcomes

A crucial requirement to make the switch to Keet’s outcomes solution was ensuring it was a seamless transition for staff as well as for the clinic's patients. Thanks to Keet’s onboarding process and implementation team, Andrea couldn’t be more pleased with the end result. The practice was able to quickly implement and adapt to Keet and they now describe their outcomes strategy and workflow as ”very user friendly and intuitive”, unlike their previous outcomes vendor. 

“You guys are innovative. You're thinking ahead. And at the beginning of 2019 when MIPS was very confusing for us and our industry, every other vendor I looked at only added to the complexity. Keet was our easy button. Working with the leaders at Keet was almost too good to be true. The Keet solution offers everything in one and we really don't have to do anything extra. So I think that innovation and application into today's world just really puts you guys apart.” - Andrea Baumann.

The team at ProRehab also leveraged select therapists within their clinic to champion the entire Keet solution throughout the clinic. 

“We have champions of the Keet solution, essentially a subset of our therapists that are more adept to technology, and it’s not necessarily age specific, but just more adept to technology. These folks are really attuned to the system and can easily walk patients through it. They were building some of the early patient adopters and it resulted in some of the highest utilization percentages we saw. Other patients who didn’t have this hands-on approach, they were the slower ones to adopt. Our champions though paved the way with examples and strategies for patients to easily adopt Keet.” - Andrea Baumann

Looking forward

ProRehab was looking for more than just an outcomes solution, they wanted something that allowed them to engage their patients when it’s most convenient for them. 

“We wanted something more than just an outcomes package, something that we could engage with our patients on a regular basis. We're able to provide home exercise, patients are able to have 24 hour access to their therapists through the portal. We’ve also been able to tie in our customer service piece, which is very important to us.”

From tracking outcomes on paper, to using another outcomes vendor, and finally partnering with Keet Health for outcomes and patient engagement, it looks like third time's the charm for the team at ProRehab.

therapist on ipad

Patients over Profits: Introducing Keet for COVID

After thinking about COVID-19 and the impact it has and will have on our industry, we realized, quickly, what’s most important at this time.

It’s the patients and providers we serve.

It’s incredibly important to everyone here at Keet that we do everything we can to help keep the lights on at every outpatient rehab practice across the country (metaphorically speaking of course) so that patients can continue to receive great care and progress towards their goals.

We are happy to announce that Keet Health has taken action to contribute to the greater good of our community at this time and has prioritized patients and providers over profit.

Keet has introduced a new, free offer we've dubbed Keet for COVID designed to help keep outpatient rehab clinics across the country open for business and delivering care. We are, and have always been, the type of people who realize technology won’t solve all problems, but when combined with a dose of humanity it can make experiences better, connection possible, and healthcare more approachable - no matter the odds we face.

Keet for COVID gives healthcare organizations around the country the following capabilities, for unlimited users and free of charge through June 30, 2020:

  • Home exercise plans - Provide home exercise plans to get your patients engaged and working towards their care goals
  • Secure messaging - Easily and securely connect with your patients outside the walls of you clinic
  • Patient education - Deliver content and education to patients when they need it most
  • Patient Reported Outcome Surveys - Leverage outcomes data to make sure your patients are getting better and then tweak care plans accordingly
  • Telehealth - Combine your engagement strategy with virtual visits and telehealth to connect with patients wherever they are

If you’d like to get started with this modified version of Keet, please complete our Keet for COVID survey which will collect some basic information about your practice. Upon completion, a team member will follow up and send you the necessary information you need to get started with Keet for COVID.

While the broader healthcare system is appropriately focused on dealing with acute cases of COVID-19, millions of patients will still require treatment for musculoskeletal disorders during this time.

Our priority is to help rehab therapists and the patients they serve in any way possible as we collectively manage a new (and shifting) reality.

The COVID-19 pandemic has deepened the fault lines in our healthcare system, creating an even greater sense of urgency to reimagine ways to protect the health of our communities. Keet has responded by doing what we do best; throwing convention out the window and getting to work on using our technology to help in any way we can.

We Believe: Our Pledge to the Healthcare Industry

There’s no denying that healthcare is complex. And yet, at the same time, we believe it’s really quite simple—focus on the patient.

You may be thinking, “It’s healthcare. Of course we’re all focusing on the patient.”

On the surface, this may be true. But when we look one layer deeper and start to explore access, affordability, accountability, and the relationship between payers, providers, and policy—that notion quickly falls apart.

Not to mention, with the ever-increasing paperwork burden and rising rates of burnout experienced by providers, there’s no energy left to cultivate meaningful relationships with patients.

So what happens?

Since we live in the digital age, technology companies,invariably, come in and try to solve all of these problems with software. They claim we can fix access with online scheduling, provider burnout with digital tools, affordability with pricing transparency tools, and provider accountability with social reviews. Individually, these are worthy strategies but they are limited in their approach and their overall impact.

These are just bandages covering up the symptoms, instead of solutions targeting the root cause.

At Keet, we know that technology itself is never the solution--not when people are involved. Ask any tech founder about adoption rates and you’ll quickly learn why. Technology is at its best when it makes the lives of the people using it easier.

This is why at Keet, we know our role is not to take the place of a body in the clinic, but rather to amplify existing strategies and solutions and be a vehicle to make certain tasks and strategies, like collecting outcome surveys or delivering care plans, less of a burden. At the end of the day, we know that the most important person in the room is the patient and that the patient-provider relationship is sacred.

At Keet, we believe that when the focus is taken off of the patient, healthcare falls apart.

We created the following healthcare beliefs as our pledge to you, and the entire healthcare industry, that these ideas will shape everything we do here at Keet. From designing our product, to choosing our partners.

Now it’s your turn

We couldn’t wait to share our belief statement with you, but we’re even more excited for you to share your belief statements with us. If it resonates with you, please share your own healthcare belief with us. We’re committed to inciting a movement for the patient this year and hope you will join us in getting the conversation started.

Want to join us? Share your healthcare belief in the comments below and around the web  with #myhealthcarebelief. You can check out the conversation on Twitter here.

Let’s give ‘em something to talk about.

What We're Reading: December 17, 2019

True, this article came out in October. But it’s still talked about at the water cooler and shared amongst our Slack channels and email strings so we thought we’d bring it back, front and center this week.

Read on to learn about the unexpected, but not unwelcome, new health care platforms & partners that are improving patient care.

>> How New Health Care Platforms Will Improve Patient Care
October 11, 2019
Harvard Business Review

The shift to value-based care and focus on outcomes is helping improve patients’ experience across the board. One of the ways this is happening is that the location of where healthcare happens is changing. The picture of a patient sitting in a gown on a cold table in a doctor’s office no longer holds true - patients are getting care from work, at home or wherever their phones take them. And not only is this making care easier to get, it’s also making it more cost effective.

Five Key Takeaways:

  1. “The telemedicine market is expected to grow to $64 billion in the U.S. over the next five years.”
  2. “Healthcare (is) recognizing the need for a coordinated approach to managing patient relationships.”
  3. “Coordinating patient care across an expanded and more diverse ecosystem will only get more challenging with the tsunami of data coming from new sources.”
  4. “A recent International Data Corporation report predicts a 36% growth rate for healthcare data over the next five years, faster than in any other industry.”
  5. “Healthcare is at an inflection point.”

What we can learn:

It’s time to join the version of healthcare that consumers are learning to expect. This new version is one that provides more convenient care to patients. Data can help you do that, but it’s the right tools that will make it happen.

Every month, as new devices, platforms and tools appear and make the patient experience that much easier, patients are beginning to be more engaged in managing their health, and they’re expecting their providers to keep up in providing care through cutting edge technologythat makes things more streamlined, intuitive and coordinated.

Providers are at an inflection point in the history of healthcare. Traditional care delivery models are disappearing and new, exciting interventions are taking their place. And the compliments of these new platforms entering the market? More personalized, patient-center experiences at a lower cost. A win-win for everyone.

What are you reading this week?

With ❤️,

Keet Health

What would you do with a bigger reimbursement check?

Black Friday, the day of the year when people spend big.

Throwing down cash at Target with the reckless abandon of a person who just won the lottery and has abandoned all their responsibilities is a total rush, we know.

So just imagine, what if you could feel that way at work but with Medicare footing the bill? 

In what might just be the best news you have ever received (professionally anyway), CMS is effectively handing out free money to people who report their outcomes data.

Yes, you have to earn it with some hard work, but when you already deliver awesome value to your patients, why not tell Medicare and let them reward you with a big fat bonus?

What kind of bonus? How about up to a 9 percent Medicare bonus - and as much as a 19 percent bonus if you score over the exceptional performance threshold.

That’s money back in your pocket to invest in your clinic in any way you want.

The options that open up hold a lot of potential for making a big difference in your bandwidth and service as a clinic. Here are some of our favorite ideas for how you could spend those dollars to make the year 2022 feel like Black Friday, but better.

  1. More marketing dollars. Who would say no to a bigger advertising budget, especially when it could give you a competitive edge with all those bigger clinics and their seemingly bottomless budgets?
  2. Attract more patients. With more developed marketing, you will gain better visibility in the marketplace, which will lead a whole new demographic of patients straight to your door.
  3. Better equipment. Investing in improved, high-tech equipment will not only increase your bandwidth as a practice, but will set your office apart as one who cares about value and the patient’s experience.
  4. Continuing education for therapists. Education programs, tools and opportunities for therapists are not only a value add for your staff, but it will improve the quality and capabilities of your entire team and the care they bring to patients.
  5. Recruit the best talent. The practical investments you’ve made in your clinic will help you attract and retain top talent. With patient outcomes data at your fingertips to prove the care you provide, the very best therapists will be itching to get their foot in the door.

So give your future self a gift that you won’t regret. Unlike that Fair Isle sweater you told yourself you’d wear but is still in its bag from last Black Friday, a bigger Medicare reimbursement check will never go to waste.

Participate in MIPS in 2020 and get your big fat reimbursement check in 2022.

What will you spend yours on? 

With love (and happy shopping),

Keet Health

PS: Want to learn more about MIPS and how you can get on the road to a bigger reimbursement check? Learn more about Keet for MIPS here.

The Link Between Outcomes and Continuing Education

Today we welcome John Woolf, PT, to the Keet blog. John is the co-founder of Patient Success Systems and takes the concept of healing far beyond traditional academic boundaries. He believes that today’s health care system requires a new approach to patient care that begins with developing the skills that get patients engaged with their own care.

For this article, we sat down with John to ask him about his approach to patient outcomes, how outcomes can help grow and develop your therapists, the risk of not reviewing your outcomes data and much more. Don't miss the Q&A below.

Q1: Let’s start with outcomes as it seems to be a buzzword in healthcare right now. What do patient outcomes mean to you in a clinic setting? What do they mean to the patient?

Great question. I see that a lot of physical therapists right now are getting boxed in with this idea of outcomes. First, let’s define what an outcome is….

An outcome is any result that is measurable-and the key phrase for practical purposes is “measurable result”. I believe that clinicians and businesses that are in the habit of measuring outcomes, whatever that outcome may be, have the benefit of being able to measure the changes that come from either intentional or unintentional actions.

In other words, “you can't manage what you can't measure”.

Unfortunately, I think there is a negative bias developing right now around the term “outcomes”. Whether the negativity stems from our government or an organizational requirement, it’s not helping anyone involved.

Instead, outcomes should be seen as an opportunity to reflect on how an individual is doing as a clinician and or as a clinical team.

Patients vs Outcomes: Friend or foe? 

I think another challenge providers are struggling with is the actual process of gathering these data. In my experience working with clinics across the country, I'm sensing that there's not a lot of confidence in the patient's ability to interpret the questions in many of the tools.

The truth is that patients are struggling to answer some of these questions. I’ve had patients of my own push back because they didn’t find the questions relevant or simply didn’t understand them - and I consider myself a pretty good teacher!

A great shortcoming of implementing these outcome tools is assisting patients to understand the what and the why behind these “extra steps”.  

In order to develop a successful outcomes program in your clinic, it’s essential to first put yourself in the patient’s shoes. Have you explained the history of outcomes tools, why the questions you are asking are valid and crucial to their recovery, and a best practices approach to putting them to use?

At the end of the day, the education must not only be for the clinical team, but also serve as patient facing education that creates clear expectations.

Q2: How can patient outcomes data benefit a practice?

Outcomes data provides you with indispensable knowledge - and knowledge is power!

I'm a strong believer in the idea of Player Development. If you've heard me lecture on this topic before you'll understand that I strongly believe that organizations or teams succeed because they have strong players.

Think about it, statistics on professional athletes are tracked (and tracked and tracked…) to measure performance. Batting averages, ERA’s, sacks, handicaps - I could go on and on. We know a player’s performance and ultimately, it's the responsibility of the leaders in the organization to gather these data, organize it in a way that's meaningful to the players and subsequently develop a system that helps each of the players understand the data. Not only that, but established the process of mutually analyzing the data and identifying ways in which scores can be improved. I have called this process “reviewing game film”.

If leaders don't do this, then outcomes data simply turns into “numbers” and people, organizations, or both run the risk of losing the opportunity to truly improve. 

Progressive organizations are guiding their players through a process of truly understanding what attributes to an outcome. And this invites a deep learning opportunity for everyone involved.

Q3: Talk about the importance of continuing education in a practice. What happens when staff members don’t have access to training resources?

Continuing education in any professional endeavor is essential. Often when I speak with new graduates the most important message that I give is that their learning has just begun, and it is essential to consider a learning path for professional growth

The challenge for many professionals today isn’t just what to learn, but how and when to learn it.

No question, there is a big shift right now in how learning happens. With the advent of online access to information, there's almost an overwhelming array of options. Critical issues like work/life balance, higher productivity standards, and understanding how to succeed as a provider in a rapidly changing environment can be frustrating. Practices run a big risk by not creating a “player development” plan that will help them to hone their skills in all aspects of clinical and business performance. Because of online learning, we are in the midst of an educational revolution where the more advanced clinics are going to develop their players with micro-learning and relationship-centered systems that integrate performance data.

Q4: How do patient outcomes affect training resources and continuing education in a practice?

Let’s go back to statistics of professional athletes.

Say you have a team that practices 16 hours a day but continues to lose game after game. The most obvious next step isn’t to keep doing what you’re doing but rather look at your game stats, or your outcomes. What performance data is most important? How reliable is the data?  What is your process for regularly reviewing the data so that players can learn?

Top tier organizations treat continuing education in the same way. They treat continuing education as part of a professional and personal development program.

It’s not something that a PT does in order to meet their licensure requirements, but rather an intentional process of becoming an excellent professional that is aligned to the mission, beliefs and values of the organization of which they are apart (not to mention the benefits of personal growth). Leader’s will know that the learning is happening, not because the player “checks the box” on a learning module, but because the measurable outcome around which the learning was designed is satisfactory or improving.

Above all else, continuing education must not only be effective but efficient. The future of education will meet the learner where he or she is, and must be engaging, meaningful and measurable. 

Big Clinic Energy: How to get in on the [outcomes] action

How big is your clinic? It might seem like big clinics are having all the fun. They’ve got the muscle they need to invest in new systems and expand with less worry. They have bigger marketing budgets allowing them to advertise and draw in new patients. Plus, their offices might rival a memory you have of The Jetsons.

We think it's time small clinics had their share of the fun too.

While MIPS might not sound very sexy, having outcomes data at your fingertips definitely is. If you are a part of a small clinic and you participate in MIPS or opt in to report your outcomes, not only are you putting yourself in the running for a bigger reimbursement check, but you’ll also receive a whole host of benefits that can open up a world of possibilities for your clinic - large or small.

Here are four reasons to collect your outcomes data - MIPS required or not:

  1. You’ll get quality ratings that you get to share with the world. Putting your outcomes on the line shows that you’re confident enough in your service to let the world in on your numbers (something not everyone is willing to do). Your outcomes data allows you to demonstrate your value in a way that will make your small clinic more competitive in the marketplace. Those ratings can help put you miles ahead of the competition (big or small).
  2. Gain marketing prowess. Investing in marketing can be a game changer for a clinic’s ability to expand their business, but it's also expensive. When Medicare publishes your quality outcomes results, you’ll gain a visibility that money can’t buy. Big clinics might be shelling out a lot for their marketing, but by making your outcomes numbers public, you’ll get wildly beneficial visibility for free. Just think of it like this, good outcomes = free marketing.
  3. Negotiate better contracts. Being able to demonstrate in a tangible way that your small clinic is competitive in the marketplace helps compete on quality when it comes to alternative payment models. You’ll be able to confidently show your numbers to payers and negotiate for better contracts like a boss.
  4. Future proof your practice. In such a saturated marketplace, it can be hard to attract new clients and lock down current ones. But with the outcomes data proving the prowess of you and your clinic, you will gain a competitive edge that will make you irresistible to new clients, improving your business trajectory for years to come.

Keet is here to make sure your small clinic gets the chance it deserves.

Big bonus check? Check.

Leveling up and playing in the big leagues? Check and check. 

MIPS evens the playing field because it’s not about how much you spend attracting patients with marketing, or how many locations you have -- you can compete on quality instead. Reporting with MIPS lets you compete on outcomes - not your size.

To report or not to report?

Psyche - there is no question. 

We all know that participation in MIPS is required for practices that see a significant number of Medicare patients. To jog your memory, “significant” means over $90,000 in Medicare Part B charges, over 200 Part B patients, and over 200 or more professionals services to Part B patients. 

So if that’s not you and your clinic, you may be thinking to yourself, “Hurrah! I dodged the MIPS bullet again.”

Not so fast.

While MIPS might not be required for you or your practice in 2020, there’s still an immense amount of value in collecting your outcomes data anyways (plus, PTs have a leg up on other providers when it comes to reporting). Value that doesn’t have anything to do with your reimbursement. 

Why, you ask?

One of the ways that CMS is encouraging providers to collect their outcomes data in the first place will be to publish their MIPS scores on their public website starting in 2021. Patients looking for a provider will be able to go to the CMS website and compare clinics and their scores, sort of like a professional healthcare Yelp page. Imagine having a poor score - or, gasp, no score at all - compared to other outpatient rehab providers in your area who have positive outcomes data going back a few years. I know which clinic I would choose in that situation.

If you prioritized participation and receiving a high MIPS score, that exposure is invaluable for your clinic.

Here are three other reasons to collect and report your patient outcomes data, even if you’re not required to:

  1. Outcomes data can help inform your ongoing clinical education program. Rather than taking a guess at what additional training your providers need, leveraging available data that tells a story on what would be most beneficial ensures you aren’t wasting clinic dollars. 
  2. Outcomes data is an invaluable hiring tool and can give your clinic an advantage when it comes to recruiting the best of the best in outpatient rehab. Just think, don’t you want to work for a practice with a strong track record of positive patient outcomes?
  3. Programs like Walmart’s Centers of Excellence are becoming more and more common among employers in order to get their employees back to work, healthily. By taking part in MIPS and having outcomes data at your fingertips, you can be competitive in a value-based care world and align yourself with leading hospitals and physicians.

Looking for even more? Here are three more reasons to report in 2020

So, we encourage you to report. With a little concerted effort and some support from Keet, earning a solid MIPS score and making yourself even more competitive in the marketplace will be a breeze. Learn more about Keet for MIPS here

The reason patient behavior is so darn important

Healthcare as we know it is changing, and this brings providers to a professional crossroads.

On one hand, programs like MIPS bring forth opportunities for physical therapists to prove their worth within the healthcare system (learn more about our ethos on MIPS here). For years surgeons and orthopedic specialists have always had a leg up and reaped the bigger financial rewards for the care they provided. Now with MIPS, PTs have the opportunity to directly compete with these providers and show the low cost, quality care they provide.

That’s a change we’re all ready to welcome.

But the regulations also include a caveat; if a provider doesn’t demonstrate excellent performance, they’re at risk for financial penalties. Even worse, they could get passed over when it comes to participating in value-based contracts.

It’s a major shift in how care is delivered, and changes are coming fast. Providers need to adapt quickly to reap the benefits, as delaying participation can result in major consequences--like a frozen reimbursement schedule.

Given these options, equipping your practice to deliver positive outcomes has never been more critical.

The effects of patient behavior

As a provider, it’s tempting to rely solely on a platform to drive, track and report patient outcomes. If you have the data and know what your outcomes are like, what more do you need, right?

But if you are only looking at your outcomes data without formulating a plan for how you intend to drive patients to take an active interest in their care inside and outside the clinic, you miss a critical element that is directly correlated to outcomes--active patient engagement.

Engaging your patients in between visits is key to not only understanding your outcomes data, but using it to make continuous improvements to the quality of care you provide.

How so, you ask?

Studies show that medical care is responsible for only 10 percent of a patient’s health and well being, but a whopping 40 percent is driven by patient behavior which plays a much larger role in long term health outcomes.

40 percent! 

That statistical difference is a significant reason why engaging your patients outside the walls of your office is critical to establishing good outcomes for your patients-what they do when they are not with you will have more of an impact on their health than the care they receive inside your clinic.

Patients who are encouraged to engage in a platform to complete  their exercises in between appointments, communicate with their provider in between visits, and read educational materials are much more likely to stick with the care program you assign and exhibit positive health behavior - this is where you see results that lead to a good outcome.

Another reason to prioritize patient engagement is that engagement informs your outcomes. Many clinics see a 20 percent improvement in overall outcomes just by seeing their patient satisfaction data, because it illuminates places where you can make improvements in how you engage your patients.

Engagement also leads to satisfied patients and satisfied patients produce exceptional outcomes. 

Take Patient A, for example. Patient A walks into a clinic and is handed lengthy paperwork to fill out, spends minimal time with their busy provider and receives no follow up or personalized care after they leave. They aren’t very likely to feel positive about their experience, are they?

Now, Patient B. Patient B has chosen a clinic that utilizes a patient engagement strategy and platform. The platform makes their digital health survey a breeze, it’s automated so they can see updated and personalized exercises after they leave, and when they have a quick follow up question, they can reach out via the platform and get an answer quickly from their provider.

That is the patient who is much more likely to be excited about coming back, motivated to jump in and get engaged - not to mention tell their friends and family about the great care provided.

A great experience goes a long way toward facilitating a good recovery, and better outcomes. If you don’t utilize patient engagement as a portion of your outcomes strategy, you’re missing out on the opportunity these two things afford one another.

In short, a two part strategy can make all the difference. 

When paired with an engagement strategy, patient outcomes improve exponentially. Simply, engaged patients are better patients and produce better outcomes. 

And as better outcomes will now give you a competitive advantage in MIPS and other value-based programs, exceptional performance can help you get the maximum possible value and the highest possible reimbursement for your clinic, all by simply engaging your patients.

That’s the power of combining performance data with an engagement platform that helps you get to where you need to go.


PS: We're counting down the days until PPS 2019 in Orlando! Will you be there? Come visit our booth #706 to say hi to our team plus join us Friday morning at 7:30 am for a round table discussion with Keet leadership and our industry friends around the future of healthcare. Don't worry, coffee is on us.