Helpful Grids and Informational Tools


Helpful Grids, Tables, Template Letters, and Posters for your practice. HCMS has developed several grids and tables to assist physicians' offices with contacting health plans (for eligibility, benefits, pre-certifications, etc.), and in areas such as behavioral health, a comparison of efficiency & quality programs, a language search for physician, incentive bonus programs, a search for physicians by language, a chart of Web Portal systems, and more.



  • HCMS Charge Master Calculator (based on a percentage above breakeven) - All physician and/or practices need to establish a charge master or price list for services. Charge masters can be developed in multiple ways. HCMS has created a calculator in Excel which utilizes one of the possible options based upon using Medicare's RVU data in conjunction with the physician or practice's cost. (Updated October 2016
  • HCMS Work Relative Value Unit (RVU) Calculator - HCMS has developed a work RVU calculator to help physicians determine their total work RVUs. This calculator can be used to track work productivity and to compare one's work productivity to one's compensation. It can also be used to compare work productivity to what is being reported by a practice management system. The calculator includes 40 different specialties based upon the top 50 codes for their particular specialty. Plus, if a particular code is not listed within the top 50 codes additional codes can be added to help determine work productivity based upon the work RVU. (Updated 2017) 


Grids and Tip Sheets:

  • Annual TMA Compliance Calendar - physician practices must keep up to date on an increasing number of deadlines required by various rules and regulations. The TMA Compliance Calendar can be used to keep track of the deadlines.

  • Behavioral Health Contact Grid  - Complete contact information for behavioral/mental health with the five major Houston health plans. (Updated December 2015)   

  • Commercial Health Plans Contact Grid  (complete version) - Complete contact information with the five major Houston health plans including eligibility, benefits, physician portals, lab, provider representatives, inpatient certifications, disease and case management, imaging, DME, and much more.  (Updated March 2017) 
  • Commercial Health Plans Contact Grid (shortened version) - A shorten version of the complete commercial health plans contact grid with some of the same great and useful information.  (Updated March 2017)  
  • Contract Analysis Tip Sheet  (Physician Employment)- This tip sheet provides a list of items that physician should evaluate and discuss prior to signing an employment agreement
  • HIT Consultants Grid (IT Vendors) - this grid lists IT vendors and consultants with physical offices in Houston and compares the various Meaningful Use and IT services offered by each vendor. (Updated July 2016) 
  • Incentive Bonus Program - a helpful grid that summarizes various incentive programs based on quality measures offered by various health plans and how to participate in those programs.  (Updated June 2016) 
  • Language-Search for Physician- a table describing the on-line instructions for the five major health plans in the Houston area to assist with locating a physician who speaks another language.  (Updated February 2017) 
  • Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Comparison Chart - This chart lists MOC requirements for each of the 24 specialty boards under the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) and what reciprocating credits are offered if you are certified in more than one specialty. (Updated July 2016) 
  • Medicaid Health Plans Contact Grid - complete contact information with Houston area Medicaid health plans including eligibility, benefits, physician portals, lab, provider representatives, inpatient certifications, disease and case management, imaging, DME, and much more. (Updated May 2016)  
  • Medical Cultural Awareness - Houston is a city of many cultures. To assist our membership with caring for a diverse population of patients, HCMS has created a webpage of the cultural awareness tools mentioned below.  You can find this information at → Practice Resources → Quality → Cultural Awareness. (August 2016)
  • Medicare -Primary or Secondary? - grid to help determine if Medicare is primary or secondary. (Updated March 2017) 
  • New Practice Checklist - HCMS created a New Practice checklist. This checklist is designed to help aid physicians in starting their own practice.  (Updated Jan 2017) 
  • Qualified Clinical Data Registry Grid (2016) - Physicians wishing to participate in a QCDR for PQRS CY 2016 should review the list of available qualified registries. Each of the 2016 QCDRs have provided detailed information including their contact information, the measures they support, the services they offer and the costs incurred by their clients. (August 2016) Note: This list is for PQRS only and is not applicable to the new MIPS program. A new QCDR list will be published upon CMS approval.
  • Reference Guide for Reimbursement for Nurse Practitioners (NPs) and Physician Assistants (PAs) for in-office services - (Currently being revised) -This guide provides helpful information regarding billing for physician extenders according to major payers. (Updated Nov 2016)
  • Telehealth Grid - HCMS has created a telehealth grid highlighting reimbursement policies for the major payers in Harris County. This information includes reimbursable CPT codes as well as coverage rules. (Updated March 2017) 


Letters, and Templates:


  • Consent Forms - The Texas Medical Disclosure Panel adopted the following form which shall be used to provide informed consent to a patient or person authorized to consent for the patient of the possible risks and hazards involved with the procedure.   
  • HITECH Non-Disclosure 
    • Sample policy - Regarding Patient Right – Restrict Use or Disclosure of PHI
    • Sample Form -  Regarding Patient Right - Restrict Use or Disclosure of PHI

  • Out of state care forms for emergent and non-emergent care - Texas Tort reform has been challenged in New Mexico. A patient treated in Texas who lives in New Mexico filed suit against a Texas physician in New Mexico. On March 3, 2016, New Mexico Governor, Susan Martinez signed House Bill 270, the out of state provider access bill. New Mexico law makers crafted this solution to protect access to medical care for residents of New Mexico who come to Texas for their healthcare. It is recommended that Texas Physicians have patients sign an agreement consenting to medical care provided in Texas be governed by Texas law. The Texas Medical Association (TMA) has developed choice language that physicians can use for non-emergency care and emergency room care. As a protective measure, physicians might find it advantageous to offer a consent whenever treating any out-of- state patient. TMA encourages physicians to consult with their respective counsel in deciding to implement the consent forms. Although HB 270 doesn’t take effect until July 1, that does not mean a court would not uphold such a contract. 
  • Patient Claim Forms
    - Below are links to patient claim forms for the major payers: 




  •  Workplace Posters - Federal: