September 21, 2021

Earn MIPS Improvement Activity Credits By Contributing COVID Images and Data to ACR Registries

Powerful Platform for Analytic Tools on Clinical Care Data Helps Sites and Providers Meet CMS Requirements

Medical imaging practices and radiologists now can claim Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) “Improvement Activity” credits for contributing COVID-related data and images to the American College of Radiology® (ACR®) COVID-19 Imaging Research Registry (CIRR) or ACR Lung Cancer Screening Registry (LCSR). Practices and clinicians can earn Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) bonus payments and avoid CMS penalties by completing MIPS requirements.

“As a result of ACR-backed CMS policy updates to address the COVID-19 public health emergency, CIRR and LCSR participation enables most radiologists1 and practices2 to fully meet yearly MIPS Improvement Activity requirements,” said William T. Thorwarth Jr., MD, FACR, ACR Chief Executive Officer. “Radiologists and imaging practices should take advantage of this opportunity.”

CIRR is the newest of the six registries that form the ACR National Clinical Imaging Research Registry™ (ANCIRR). ANCIRR registries collect and curate images and clinical data from many practice settings to produce large data sets that enable researchers to address complex questions and produce results applicable across care settings, locations and populations. CIRR is a primary data collector for the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB)-funded Medical Imaging and Data Resource Center (MIDRC) — which may become the world’s largest COVID-19 imaging archive.

“CIRR participation enables radiologists and practices that have never taken part in research to help move patient care forward, aid health equity efforts and strengthen their practice by satisfying an increasing number of MIPS requirements,” said Sharyn I. Katz, MD, MTR, principal investigator of the ACR COVID-19 Imaging Research Registry. “Now is the time to take part in CIRR.”

The LCSR is one of the seven registries that comprise the ACR National Radiology Data Registry (NRDR®). NRDR receives data from facilities to enable practice quality improvement through site feedback and benchmarking against peers. Data contributed to NRDR is made available for exploring a wide range of questions about radiology practice and new areas for site improvement.

“Contributing to the LCSR not only fuels advances against the nation’s leading cancer killer, but against COVID-19 — which continues to kill thousands nationwide,” said Charles White, MD, FACR, Chair of the ACR Lung Cancer Screening Registry Committee. “With the added ability to satisfy certain MIPS requirements, lung cancer screening sites can help their practice and countless future patients through LCSR participation.”

Get ANCIRR information at

Get NRDR information at


1 - Individual MIPS participating radiologists or radiology group practices who are considered “non-patient facing” can earn the required 40 Improvement Activity (IA) credits.

2 - CIRR participation in the COVID-19 Clinical Data Reporting with or without Clinical Trial earns the site 20 credits. LCSR participants that contribute COVID diagnosis-related information can earn these credits as well.