• Using Data to Advance Patient Care and Enable Physician Success

    Academy Past President and IRIS Registry committee chair William L. Rich III, MD, FACS, presented during the AAO 2018 symposium, “The Value of the IRIS Registry: What Can We Learn From 250 Million Patient Records?” Dr. Rich and a distinguished panel of Academy leaders discussed how the Academy’s IRIS Registry enables the study of practice patterns, clinical outcomes and possible risk factors for disease development.

    The IRIS® Registry (Intelligent Research in Sight), the nation’s first comprehensive eye disease clinical registry, provides indispensable insights and scientific advancements. It elevates the profession as a source for research and a wealth of data, leading to improved quality of care and successful Medicare physician payment system reporting. The IRIS Registry culls data from nearly 53 million patients, 223 million patient records and more than 18,000 physicians contracted from over 5,100 practices. As the largest clinical data registry within medicine, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) points to the Academy's registry for other specialties to emulate.

    Exclusively accessible to U.S. Academy member ophthalmologists and physicians in training, the IRIS Registry is a proven analytic database. Insights gleaned from statistical analysis have generated 12 scientific studies. These studies cover topics ranging from strabismus surgery reoperation rates in the U.S. to the real-world effects of intravitreous anti–VEGF drugs on IOP. The most recent study on racial and gender disparities in newer glaucoma treatments was led by Mildred M.G. Olivier, MD, and assesses demographic differences in the use, safety and effectiveness of minimally invasive glaucoma surgery compared to other treatments.

    MIPS Reporting: Ophthalmologists Save $186 Million

    Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) scores highlight the exceptional value of the IRIS Registry. For instance, 99 percent of Academy members using it for 2017 MIPS reporting earned remarkable performance bonuses. By comparison, only 71 percent of physicians across all of medicine earned the same bonus. By reporting through the IRIS Registry, all participants avoided financial penalties for 2018 MIPS. This relief from penalties will save ophthalmologists an estimated total of $186 million — or $23,250 each — and underscores the IRIS Registry’s unequivocal impact on quality reporting nationwide.

    $2 Million Grant Advances Real-World Pediatric Disease Research

    A $2 million gift from the Knights Templar Eye Foundation was paramount to establishing a permanent research fund for the advancement of pediatric ophthalmology so that physicians can use IRIS Registry data to serve the needs of children as well as adults. The gift will support researchers investigating both rare and common eye diseases affecting children and will facilitate the discovery of optimal, real-world approaches to disease prevention and treatment.

    $3.9 Million in Penalties Avoided at The Academy Resource Center

    At the AAO 2018 Academy Resource Center, the Academy’s IRIS Registry team helped meeting attendees with 2018 MIPS reporting. As a result, 90 individual physicians and 37 practices reporting as groups (representing 107 ophthalmologists) saved approximately $3.9 million in avoided penalties.