• Academy Caps 2-Year Effort with Implementation of Ophthalmology Subspecialty Medicare Designations


    Ophthalmology subspecialists can now self-designate their field of expertise for Medicare, capping a two-year Academy effort to put you on better footing in for federal programs and possibly other insurance-company data. Our goal is to ensure that new taxonomy codes for eye care are used in the cost component of Medicare’s new value-based payment system.  

    Taxonomy designations are now available for the following subspecialists:

    • Glaucoma;
    • Oculoplastic;
    • Retina; and
    • Uveitis. 

    We continue to seek similar opportunities for other ophthalmic subspecialties, including neuro-ophthalmology, pediatrics and cornea. 

    These special designations position ophthalmologists for fairer cost comparisons under Medicare. This is important because CMS will measure practitioner resource use in the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System under Medicare’s new Quality Payment Program. The codes should ensure CMS evaluates subspecialists more appropriately among their counterparts, rather than all ophthalmologists. 

    The Academy first proposed the concept of taxonomy codes nearly two years ago at the annual gathering of ophthalmology’s subspecialty leaders. The Association of University Professors of ophthalmology also provided support for this broader effort.

    Learn to Successfully Utilize Taxonomy by Using Academy Resources

    The Academy has the resources you need to remain well-positioned for today’s value-based health care. Act before Medicare Administrative Contractors nationwide implement these new codes on July 3. Learn more about taxonomy and the steps you can take by visiting aao.org/taxonomy.