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AAOS Now

Published 8/1/2015
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Lori Boukas

What’s New With AJRR?

For the second consecutive year, the American Joint Replacement Registry (AJRR) has been designated a Qualified Clinical Data Registry (QCDR). AJRR is one of 49 organizations in the United States that has received the designation from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to provide expanded, comprehensive medical procedure outcome information, including patient safety data.

“A continued collaboration with CMS is essential to our success as an orthopaedic registry,” said Daniel J. Berry, MD, chair of the AJRR board of directors. “With this designation, we can continue to provide physicians who participate in our registry with a resource to seek incentive payments and avoid penalties.”

The QCDR program is part of the CMS Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS), a data collection effort that employs reimbursement incentives to encourage doctors to report patient outcomes. Eligible professionals (EPs) can use a designated QCDR to report data and information.

In 2014, AJRR partnered with CECity, a leading cloud-based registry provider, to create a custom PQRS reporting platform. This platform—the AJRR Orthopaedic Quality Resource Center—enables AJRR participants to submit data to CMS and ensures that all participating EPs meet all requirements before submitting their PQRS reports to CMS for payment.

“A QCDR designation adds to the value of participating in the AJRR for orthopaedic surgeons,” said Dr. Berry. “We encourage all participating surgeons to use the AJRR Orthopaedic Quality Resource Center for their PQRS reporting.”

EPs who participate in PQRS reporting through the AJRR Orthopaedic Quality Resource Center can report Medicare data to CMS and will receive timely, continuous performance monitors, performance gap analysis, patient outlier identification, access to patient care management tools, targeted education, various resources to close performance gaps, and registry benchmarks. The online center can be accessed at https://www.medconcert.com/ajrr

Augmented data services
In June 2015, the AJRR announced a collaborative relationship with Mendenhall Associates, Inc. (MAI), publisher of Orthopedic Network News. MAI will provide data services to augment the master file of orthopaedic implants and components maintained by the AJRR.

The arrangement expands the current AJRR component database with additional manufacturers’ device data collated by MAI. The result will be the largest and most comprehensive hip and knee joint replacement component database in the United States. This database will enable the AJRR to identify areas of interest or concern.

“MAI has a long-standing relationship with most of the orthopaedic device manufacturers,” said Jeffrey P. Knezovich, CAE, AJRR executive director. “This experience, which spans many years of obtaining collections of orthopaedic implant devices, including catalogue numbers and device attributes, organizing them, and providing meaningful statistics to its subscribers, will allow the AJRR to have a more complete registry.”

Updated website
Recently, AJRR revamped its website (
www.ajrr.net) to make it easier for surgeons and hospitals to join the registry. The improved website has a more responsive design, simpler navigation, and clearer value propositions, making it easy to connect with AJRR.

Visitors to the website can easily access the Risk Calculator, download a copy of the AJRR Annual Report, view the list of more than 500 participating hospitals, and connect with the User Group network.

Lori Boukas is director of marketing and communications for the AJRR. She can be reached at boukas@ajrr.net