RISE Frequently Asked Questions

Have questions about RISE? Wondering if you should participate in this electronic patient data reporting system? Read our FAQs for details about general RISE information, RISE for health care providers, and RISE for researchers. If you still have any questions, please contact us at RISE@rheumatology.org.

General RISE Questions

Who is eligible to use RISE?

RISE is available to currently practicing rheumatologists and rheumatology health professionals and is free to ACR/ARP members.

Who monitors and reviews the registry?

ACR provides oversight and monitoring of the registry and its information integrity with assistance from the registry technology vendor, FIGmd.

What type of data will be collected?

RISE compiles information from both the Electronic Health Record (EHR) and the Practice Management (PM) system that is collected during routine clinical care and entered into EHRs, including demographic data, medications, laboratory studies, and more.

Are there privacy regulations or policies in place to protect patients' health information? Is it HIPAA compliant?

Yes. The RISE registry infrastructure is HIPAA compliant. Only the registry vendor and the practice itself will access to PHI, which can only be used for registry operations, such as reporting on quality measures to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), or as needed/requested by participating practices. Any data used by the ACR or third parties for research or other purposes will be an aggregated limited data set with no direct patient identifiers.

How will RISE data be used?

  • Improve patient care - By providing access to detailed and aggregate data, as well as benchmarks, RISE can be used for rapid-cycle quality improvement. Moreover, RISE will allow rheumatologists to investigate treatment successes and adverse event patterns, which ultimately leads to better treatment decisions and improved patient outcomes.
  • Research - The ACR uses the aggregate limited data set in RISE to demonstrate the value of rheumatology and advance the specialty. The ACR also reviews third party requests for analyses of the data; those data requests undergo a thorough review and vetting process. Requestors only receive the aggregate, de-identified results of the analyses. No data that would identify patients or providers will be provided to researchers.
  • Advocacy - The ACR is involved with ongoing advocacy efforts related to the rheumatology community. Using RISE data, the ACR can prove the value of quality patient care to key stakeholders and influencers (e.g., lawmakers, CMS, insurance) to better advocate for the field of rheumatology.

Health Care Providers

How much does it cost to join the RISE registry?

The ACR does not charge practices to join the RISE registry, however some EHRs charge practices for patient data to be brought over into the registry. Please check with your EHR to see if they would charge your practice to connect with the registry.

How can I use the RISE registry as a practice?

  1. Quality Measure Performance Tracking
    RISE can help practices and health care providers evaluate the quality of care they deliver to patients and identify opportunities for improvement. Providers can track their performance on a variety of quality measures down to the patient level and see how they compare to their peers nationally and identify where and how they can improve in their practice.
  2. QPP MIPS Reporting
    The RISE Registry simplifies and automates annual reporting required by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Because RISE has been designated a Qualified Clinical Data Registry (QCDR), participating providers can report on a variety of quality measures for MIPS. RISE also offers many rheumatology-specific measures not available in any other registry for your improvement and reporting purposes. Practices can report for the Quality, Improvement Activities, and Promoting Interoperability performance categories.

What are the participation requirements?

In order to participate in the registry, providers/practices must:

  • Be active members of the ACR or ARP.
  • Complete the RISE registry online enrollment, which includes a Data Use Agreement and a Business Associate Agreement (BAA).
  • Review the RISE data model and provide information on what registry data fields are currently captured in your EHR. Please note the ACR does not require workflow changes in order to participate in the registry. If there are data you are not capturing in your EHR, that is acceptable.
  • Work with the ACR's registry partner, FIGmd, over a series of conference calls to review your patient data being brought into the registry and your Quality measure performance and refine data mapping to the registry.

Do I need IRB approval to use RISE in my practice?

The Western IRB reviewed RISE and determined that, because RISE is a quality improvement registry focused on healthcare delivery and on measuring and reporting data for clinical, practical or administrative uses, individual practices do not need IRB approval or patient consent to use RISE. However, you should check with your organization or institution to determine if you are required to get independent approval or exemption from your local IRB.

Will this replace my current participation in other registries?

The RISE registry will be the only registry you need for quality reporting and quality improvement for rheumatology. There are a handful of RISE QCDR rheumatology-specific measures that are only available in the RISE registry that you can track your performances on. However, RISE practices are more than welcome to participate in additional registries.

How much time will practice staff spend implementing the RISE Registry?

Typically, practices spend a total of 6-10 hours over several months to prepare for and successfully incorporate the RISE registry. The ACR requires continuous engagement with the practices for us to ensure the data being brought over into the registry is mapped accurately.

Is training available for participants before the registry goes live at my practice?

Yes. All sites that participate in the RISE registry will be trained during the deployment process.

Is training available for participants who want to report for QPP MIPS through the registry?

Yes. ACR staff and FIGmd will work together to provide resources and guidance on how to report for MIPS through the registry.

How much does it cost to report for QPP MIPS through the registry?

There is no cost for practices who are gathering EHR and Practice Management data for RISE.

Will the data RISE collects from my EHRs be shared or released?

Within your practice, each provider will only be able to see RISE data on his/her patients and the practice's overall benchmarks. The practice administrator is the only person who will be able to see RISE data for all providers in the practice.

When RISE is used for federal reporting, RISE data, including PHI, will be encrypted and securely shared with CMS, as required by federal regulations.

When RISE data is used for research purposes, it is aggregated and scrubbed of patient identifiers before even being analyzed. All results are also aggregated and de-identified to ensure that investigators do not have access to PHI.

I am interested in joining RISE, but I would like to get a referral and talk to a provider(s) who currently uses RISE. Is that possible?

Yes, the ACR is happy to have a practice (most likely one who uses the same EHR as you do) reach out to you to discuss their experience with the RISE registry.

I have a question that hasn't been answered here. What should I do?

We're happy to answer any other questions you may have. To learn more about using RISE in your practice, please contact us at RISE@rheumatology.org.


Can RISE data be used for research and publications?

Yes. The ACR has a process through which investigators can request analyses of data from the RISE registry. Details on requesting data can be found on the Requesting RISE Data page.

What is the process for requesting data from the RISE registry for research purposes?

An overview of the data request process is laid out on the Requesting RISE Data page.

Do I need IRB approval to use RISE data for research?

You only need IRB approval for your proposed project if it is required by your organization. The ACR has received the necessary approvals and exemptions from the Western IRB for the procedures for collecting the data and using it for research purposes Additionally, each data analytic center (DAC) has received IRB approval from their local institutions to conduct analyses of the data as requested. However, researchers may be required to have their proposed projects independently approved or exempted by their local IRBs.

Can you send the data to me for analysis?

No. Currently, the ACR does not release limited datasets to individual investigators or organizations. Instead, it contracts with data analytic centers (DACs) that have both the expertise and technical infrastructure to analyze complex, large electronic health record-based datasets.

What rheumatic diseases are captured in RISE?

RISE extracts all EHR information collected by rheumatology professionals during routine clinical practice, which includes a wide range of rheumatic diseases. If you would like to see examples of the data routinely captured, send your request to RISE@rheumatology.org.

Is there a case report form for RISE?

No. RISE automatically extracts all data input into the EHR systems of participating practices, so there is no list of pre-defined data elements to pull. If you would like to see examples of the data routinely captured, send your request to RISE@rheumatology.org.

Do you have biologic samples?

No. Because the RISE registry works by digitally pulling information from electronic health records, the ACR does not collect or request biologic samples.

What does a project cost?

Because RISE data can be used for a wide variety of rheumatology research projects, costs are assessed on a case-by-case basis and are determined by the project complexity and the level of involvement required from the assigned data analytic center that will perform the actual analysis. Based on previous projects, the cost for research projects can vary widely from tens of thousands of dollars for basic queries to hundreds of thousands of dollars for publication-worthy analyses. Please contact RISE@rheumatology.org if you would like to discuss your project idea with RISE staff and better understand the impact your analytical needs have on your project budget.

I want to apply for a grant to fund a RISE data project. What do I need to know?

Researchers who plan to apply for grant funding should be aware of the following important information:

  1. A request for RISE data needs to be approved before submitting an application for funding. To accommodate this, RISE data requests submitted at least 2 months prior to the Foundation's application deadline are guaranteed to be processed in time. If a request is submitted less than 2 months prior to the deadline, RISE staff will make every effort to process the request in time, but the review results cannot be guaranteed.
  2. We highly encourage researchers to contact RISE staff to discuss the research topics prior to submitting a request. They are more than happy to provide feedback on available data and/or previous projects related to the topic.
  3. Researchers who plan to apply for funding may also want to consider the “preliminary data pathway”. This option allows requestors who have some funding readily available to conduct some basic preliminary analyses either as a feasibility study or to gather information that will enhance the funding application. More details on this pathway are available in the RISE Data User Guide.

I have a question that hasn't been answered here. What should I do?

We're happy to answer any other questions you may have. To learn more about accessing RISE data for research purposes, read through the RISE Data User Guide or please send an email to RISE@rheumatology.org.

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