AOA MORE, optometry’s data registry, takes yearlong pause

February 25, 2021
The AOA will use the time to evaluate its collection efforts and create a registry for the future that is most useful to improving eye health and vision care. The AOA launched the registry in 2015.

The AOA will take a pause in 2021 in its data collection and reporting through the AOA Measures and Outcomes Registry for Eye Care (AOA MORE).

The pause will give the AOA Board of Trustees and the AOA Quality Improvement and Data Committee, which oversees AOA MORE, the opportunity to consider new approaches to collecting data to increase efficiencies for doctors of optometry and EHR vendors and to work toward collecting the most meaningful information for doctors and their patients.

During the hiatus, doctors of optometry participating in the registry will not be able to use AOA MORE to submit 2021 Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) data to Medicare.

“Since launching AOA MORE, there has been a rapid change in both technology and regulations governing health technology and data sharing,” Committee Chair Zachary McCarty, O.D., says. “With the pandemic, this provided a perfect opportunity to place a pause on data collection, evaluate these technologies, and decide how best to redesign AOA MORE to leverage these new technologies.

“Utilizing new technology standards, our goal is to tweak the registry so that it is able to collect more data and become more useful in improving the eye health and vision care of our patients for many years to come,” Dr. McCarty says.

While AOA is taking a pause in 2021 MIPS reporting, doctors whose EHRs have submitted data to AOA MORE throughout 2020 will still be able to report 2020 MIPS data and attest through AOA MORE before the March 31 deadline. The AOA MORE attestation portal will open the first week of March. Additionally, in 2020 and 2021, any doctor signed up for enrollment in AOA MORE will be able to meet the clinical data registry Promoting Interoperability requirement.

Although the AOA will not support MIPS reporting in 2021, the AOA is committed to supporting any doctor of optometry required to report for MIPS in 2021 to ensure successful participation through alternative reporting options. Additional resources to support MIPS reporting in 2021 will be released soon.

“For the AOA optometrist, this pause means that they will need to report MIPS quality measures through other means for the 2021 performance year,” Dr. McCarty says. “Optometrists can still manually upload Quality measures, Promoting Interoperability measures, and Improvement Activities at the CMS Quality Payment Program portal. Most EHRs will have guides on how to export the data/files necessary for upload.”

Data for doctors

Launched in 2015, AOA MORE has three primary objectives:

  • To identify health trends from the anonymous data it collects.
  • To fulfill quality payment program reporting requirements.
  • To help the AOA advocate optometry’s value to legislators, regulators and the general public.

AOA MORE helped protect a minimum of $562,800 and $594,000 in payments in 2017 and 2018, respectively, to doctors of optometry, based on MIPS reporting.

Help us help you

Help inform the committee’s future data collection by taking a brief survey.

“We look forward to sharing our future data collection plans with you,” says a letter to AOA MORE participants. “To help guide our efforts moving forward, we’d be interested in hearing from you regarding your data needs.”

If you have questions regarding AOA MORE or future AOA efforts related to data collection, please contact Kara Webb, AOA Chief Strategy Officer, at

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