• Quality of Care Initiative Generates Clinical Insights on 100 Million Patient Encounters

    The IRIS® Registry is the world’s largest comprehensive clinical database for eye care outcomes

    CHICAGO – The American Academy of Ophthalmology today announced key milestones in its ongoing effort to use the power of data science to improve medical and surgical eye care. In less than three years since its introduction, the Academy’s IRIS® (Intelligent Research in Sight) Registry is now the world’s largest clinical database. Academy leaders discussed the most recent milestones with the effort during several events at AAO 2016, the Academy’s 120th Annual Meeting. 

    The IRIS Registry provides ophthalmologists with clinical benchmarks and practice patterns on more than 28 million U.S. patients and 100 million patient visits. Approximately 14,000 physicians use the ophthalmic database to assess their quality of care and ease compliance with Medicare reporting requirements. Users range from all practice types, from small practices to large institutions, including 15 academic teaching hospitals. 

    From January 1, 2013 – June 30, 2016, ophthalmologists submitted data to the IRIS Registry on patients with the most common eye diseases, including:

    • 3 million patients with open-angle glaucoma
    • 4 million patients with cataracts
    • 3 million patients with age-related macular degeneration
    • 3 million patients with diabetic retinopathy

     Other recent milestones with the IRIS Registry include:

    National Public Health Surveillance Use

    Alongside other sources of data, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is evaluating the use of the IRIS Registry to establish a new eye health surveillance system to provide population estimates of vision loss, eye diseases, eye health disparities and barriers and facilitators to access to eye care.

    Medicare Federal Reporting Compliance and Penalty Avoidance

    Over the past year, ophthalmologists have saved more than $24 million in penalty avoidances by submitting quality information through the IRIS Registry to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' Physician Quality Reporting System. As the forthcoming transition to the new physician payment system takes effect, the Academy will evolve the reporting functions of the IRIS Registry to meet its requirements.

    “The power of the IRIS Registry continues to astound the eye care community,” said William L. Rich, III, M.D., president of the American Academy of Ophthalmology. “There is no other resource in the world that can provide ophthalmologists and public health decision-makers with a real-time, real-world picture about the value, efficacy and potential to improve medical and surgical eye care. It is also fully responsive to physicians’ Medicare physician quality reporting needs.”

    AAO 2016 is being held in conjunction with the Asia-Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology Oct. 14-18 at McCormick Place, Chicago. Known as the place "Where all of Ophthalmology Meets®" the Academy’s annual meeting is the world’s largest conference for eye physicians and surgeons. For more information, see AAO 2016 highlights.

    About the American Academy of Ophthalmology

    The American Academy of Ophthalmology is the world’s largest association of eye physicians and surgeons. A global community of 32,000 medical doctors, we protect sight and empower lives by setting the standards for ophthalmic education and advocating for our patients and the public. We innovate to advance our profession and to ensure the delivery of the highest-quality eye care. Our EyeSmart® program provides the public with the most trusted information about eye health. For more information, visit aao.org.