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NLM VSAC Publishes 2018 Electronic Clinical Quality Measure (eCQM) Value Set Addendum for Eligible Clinician, Eligible Professional, and Hospital Quality Reporting Programs

On September 29, 2017, The National Library of Medicine (NLM) Value Set Authority Center (VSAC), in collaboration with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), published an addendum to the eCQM annual update specifications originally published in May 2017. This addendum updates eCQM value sets for the 2018 reporting period for Eligible Hospitals (EHs) and Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) and the performance period for Eligible Professionals (EPs) and Eligible Clinicians.

These changes affect electronic reporting of eCQMs for the following programs:

  • Quality Payment Program: Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and Alternative Payment Models (APM)
  • Hospital Inpatient Quality Reporting (IQR)
  • Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program for EPs
  • Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs for EHs and CAHs

All changes to the 2018 Reporting/Performance Period eCQM value sets are available through the National Library of Medicine’s Value Set Authority Center (VSAC). The value sets are available as a complete set, as well as value sets per measure. Measure implementers should review these changes to ensure their submissions comply with the updated requirements.

CMS revised the value sets based on updates from the following terminology code systems:

  • Current Procedural Terminology®
  • CVX (Vaccines Administered)
  • Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS)
  • International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision – Clinical Modification and Procedure Coding System (ICD-10-CM/PCS)
  • Logical Observation Identifiers Names and Codes (LOINC®)
  • RxNorm
  • SNOMED CT®

CMS has made no changes to the measure logic, the Health Quality Measure Format (HQMF) specifications, the value set object identifiers (OIDs), or the measure version numbers for 2018 eCQM reporting.

For More Information
Send your questions regarding the addendum or content of eCQM value sets, to the ONC CQM Issue Tracker. For information about eCQM specifications and supplemental materials, visit the eCQI Resource Center. For VSAC functionality or questions about downloading eCQM value sets from VSAC, please Contact NLM.

VSAC Value Set Resources: where to find the updated eCQM value sets

Access to the VSAC suite of tools requires a free Unified Medical Language System® Metathesaurus License.

  • VSAC Downloadable Resources (recommended): Prepackaged downloads for the entire set of the most recently updated and released eCQM value sets, as well as for previously released versions. Accessible from the Download tab on the VSAC Web page.
  • Application Programming Interface (API): Programmatically retrieve value sets. Find VSAC API documentation in the VSAC Support Center.
  • VSAC Web Page: Browse and download specific eCQM value sets. Filter by specific CMS eCQM Release, CMS eCQM ID, or QDM Category. Accessible from the Search Value Sets tab on the VSAC Web page.
  • Binding Parameter Specification (BPS): a metadata file that contains no terminology codes. The BPS provides a record of the value set metadata. Measure implementers can use the BPS to track versions and other parameters that define the value set code lists for each eCQM release. The BPS contains the same information as its predecessor, the discontinued Data Element Catalog (DEC), as well as additional parameters. The BPS replaces the DEC in all subsequent releases. (UMLS login not required)
  • VSAC Collaboration Tool: Interactive and centralized collaboration among VSAC authors and collaborators. Find VSAC Collaboration documentation in the VSAC Support Center.

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