Exciting News for Quality Care in Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders!

We are thrilled to announce that the Columbia Protocol (C-SSRS) has been adopted as one of the standard Clinical Quality Measures (CQMs) under the HHS CMS’s Quality Payment Program Merit-based Incentive Program (MIPS). The Columbia screener is now listed under Quality ID #504 and #505.

Quality ID #504 (https://qpp.cms.gov/docs/QPP_quality_measure_specifications/CQM-Measures/2024_Measure_504_MIPSCQM.pdf): This measure focuses on the initiation, review, and/or update to suicide safety plans for individuals with suicidal thoughts, behavior, or suicide risk. It ensures that adults aged 18 years and older, exhibiting symptoms of suicidal ideation or behavior, receive appropriate intervention through the collaboration between patients and their clinicians.

Quality ID #505 (https://qpp.cms.gov/docs/QPP_quality_measure_specifications/CQM-Measures/2024_Measure_505_MIPSCQM.pdf): This measure emphasizes the reduction in suicidal ideation or behavior symptoms among patients aged 18 years and older with mental and/or substance use disorders. It evaluates the effectiveness of interventions by assessing the reduction in suicidal ideation and/or behavior symptoms within 120 days after an index assessment, using the C-SSRS ‘Screen Version’ or ‘Since Last Visit’ (C-SSRS).

By integrating the Columbia suicide risk screener into the MIPS Clinical Quality Measures, the field is taking significant steps toward improving the quality of care for individuals facing mental health and substance use disorders. This standardized assessment tool will not only enhance patient outcomes but also contribute to a safer and more supportive healthcare environment.

Thank you to all healthcare providers and stakeholders for their dedication to advancing quality care in mental health and substance use disorders. Together, we can make a meaningful difference in the lives of those in need.