Are you and your practice ready to be rated by Medicare?  If not, you should probably get ready.

According to a CMS blog post by Dr. Patrick Conway, CMS Deputy Administrator for Innovation and Quality and Chief Medical Officer, the Medicare program is getting ready to role out a five-star rating system for three provider-types including hospitals, dialysis facilities and home health providers.  These will be in addition to the five-star rating systems already being implemented for nursing homes and, to a limited extent, for physician practices.

According to Dr. Conway, the ratings will be based on “established scientific standards of rigor and accuracy” and are designed to help patients make informed decisions based on quality.  These rating systems are (or will) be available on the “compare” websites at the follwoing links: Hospital Compare, Dialysis Facility Compare, Home Health Compare, Nursing Home Compare, and Physician Compare.

According to the Physician Compare website, at the present time, the site can only be used to compare physician group practices but patients will be able to compare individual physicians in the future.  The site also encourages physicians to keep their data up to date to be sure that patients are using current data when making comparisons.  If you are not yet familiar with the Medicare Compare websites, it’s a good idea to review them, get an understanding of the rating data and see how you and your practice measure up.