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Comment & Response
September 10, 2020

Incomplete Picture of Otolaryngologist Performance in the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System—Reply

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Boston, Massachusetts
JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. Published online September 10, 2020. doi:10.1001/jamaoto.2020.2602

In Reply We appreciate Dr Lum’s interest in our work.1 Based on our understanding of eligibility criteria for the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and the Physician Compare data sets, we believe her concerns about the generalizability of our findings are overstated. Dr Lum correctly notes that the Individual Eligible Clinician file includes performance scores for approximately 36% of all MIPS-eligible clinicians. However, this statistic is not generalizable to otolaryngologists. In the final rule establishing the MIPS, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services estimated that fewer than 7812 otolaryngologists would be eligible for participation in 2017.2 Assuming this upper bound, our sample of 6512 otolaryngologists1 would therefore represent at least 83% of all MIPS-eligible physicians in our field.

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