Statin Therapy for the Prevention and Treatment of Cardiovascular Disease

Percentage of the following patients-all considered at high risk of cardiovascular events-who were prescribed or were on statin therapy during the measurement period:

Adults aged >= 21 years who were previously diagnosed with or currently have an active diagnosis of clinical atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD); OR

Adults aged >=21 years who have ever had a fasting or direct low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) level >= 190 mg/dL or were previously diagnosed with or currently have an active diagnosis of familial or pure hypercholesterolemia; OR

Adults aged 40-75 years with a diagnosis of diabetes with a fasting or direct LDL-C level of 70-189 mg/dL.

Date Reviewed: November 19, 2017

Measure Info

MIPS 438 CMS 438
Measure Type
Measure Steward
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
Clinical Topic Area

Care Setting
Data Source
CMS Web Interface
Electronic Health Records

ACP supports QPP measure 438: "Statin Therapy for the Prevention and Treatment of Cardiovascular Disease." The performance gap has increased significantly due to new United States Preventive Task Force (USPSTF) and American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) clinical recommendations on treatment of cardiovascular disease to expand the at-risk patient population. Additionally, the balance of evidence provides a strong foundation for the treatment of blood cholesterol for the primary and secondary prevention of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease in adult men and women. Furthermore, measure specifications include appropriate exclusion criteria for patient intolerance. While we support this measure, we note that implementation of statin therapy alone does not guarantee meaningful improvements in clinical outcomes. A more meaningful measure may examine patient adherence to prescribed statin therapy. Additionally, a high percentage of patients prescribed statin therapy for the management of cardiovascular disease exacerbations (e.g., acute MI) discontinue therapy without consulting their clinician. Therefore, the measure may unfairly penalize clinicians for lack of control over non-adherent patients.