PHILADELPHIA, June 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Recognizing the need to reduce redundancy in reporting of physician performance data, UnitedHealthcare, Aetna and Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey will begin incorporating ABIM's Maintenance of Certification program data into their physician recognition and incentive programs over the next several months. This initiative will enable more than 100,000 internists and subspecialists nationwide to more easily qualify for recognition and potential pay for performance rewards, and will create the potential for improvements in health care for millions of Americans. To participate, internists must be enrolled in ABIM's Maintenance of Certification program and complete a Practice Improvement Module (PIM) - an innovative web-based assessment tool that allows physicians to analyze and evaluate practice performance so that they can improve the quality of patient care. On a voluntary basis, physicians can then authorize ABIM to send information about completed PIMs to those health plans they choose for use in their quality recognition programs - providing access to incentives without the administrative burden traditionally involved with reporting quality measures. "By recognizing physicians who are participating in Maintenance of Certification, and who have gone through the process of evaluating their practice performance with an ABIM PIM, health plans are reducing the burden of measurement and are recognizing the profession's standards for quality," said Christine K. Cassel, MD, President and CEO of ABIM. In March of this year, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska became the first health plan to work with ABIM to recognize internists who participate in Maintenance of Certification and complete PIMs. ABIM continues to have active discussions with other health insurers regarding possible future efforts to reduce redundancy and enhance quality care. About ABIM The American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) is an independent, not-for- profit organization that grants board certification -- a well-accepted marker of physician quality -- to internists and subspecialists. Certification is a rigorous, comprehensive program for evaluating physician knowledge, skills and attitudes to assure both patients and payers that a physician has achieved competence for practice in a given field. Individual physician certification results may be found at http://www.abim.org.
SOURCE American Board of Internal Medicine