Work RVU compensation formulas and surgery modifiers: To discount RVUs or not

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Sarah Wiskerchen, MBA, CPC

Work RVU compensation formulas and surgery modifiers: To discount RVUs or not
Orthopedics Today – September 2017

by Sarah Wiskerchen, MBA, CPC

In hospital employment settings, as well as large groups, work relative value unit-based compensation agreements and formulas are often standard. Understanding how work relative value units are credited is an essential element of creating or negotiating relative value unit-based compensation. Our firm has found there is no single method applied within physician organizations that use relative value unit-based compensation. This article explains why some work relative value unit reductions make sense and others should be carefully addressed with administrators.

Since 1992, many physician organizations have used work relative value units (RVUs) as a methodology for physician productivity and as an element of their physician compensation formulas. Work RVUs are published annually as part of the Resource-Based Relative Value Scale (RBRVS) developed by the CMS.

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