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What doctors need to know about MACRA’s new patient relationship codes

December 13, 2018 / Joanne Finnegan

Doctors may have heard plenty about MACRA. But they may be far less familiar when it comes to new patient relationship categories and codes. But, according to a perspective piece in the New England Journal of Medicine, they are one of the "more important provisions” of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA). And they may ultimately be tied to physicians’ payments under the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS). The billing-code modifiers, which allow clinicians to report their relationship to a patient at a given point in time and for a particular service rendered, kicked in last Jan. 1 on a voluntary basis. They help Medicare determine the extent to which a provider is responsible for elements of a patient’s care.