Partners in Quality

Because NCQA PCMH Recognition is associated with lower costs and better quality, many payers offer financial support, coaching and technical assistance or physician tiering for practices that earn NCQA PCMH Recognition. Many payers’ value-based contracts also incorporate NCQA PCMH Recognition as part of their incentive program.

The NCQA Partners in Quality (PIQ) program recognizes organizations that provide financial incentives or support services to practices seeking recognition through one or more of these NCQA programs:

  • Patient-Centered Medical Home Recognition.
  • Patient-Centered Specialty Practice Recognition.
  • Patient-Centered Connected Care Recognition.
  • Heart and Stroke Recognition Program.
  • Diabetes Recognition Program.


NCQA PCMH Recognition has been shown to improve quality and reduce health care costs. Practices that implement the PCMH model also need to effectively plan for how the implementation impacts them financially. NCQA engaged Milliman, the world’s largest providers of actuarial services to develop a white paper that addresses the question: What are the operational and financial considerations for becoming a PCMH-Recognized entity from the perspective of a primary care practice? Get the White Paper.


  • Demonstrate your commitment to quality improvement and the patient-centered model of care.
  • Receive a discount code for NCQA Recognition for practices with which you work.
  • Provide support for practices to be successful in value-based contracts.
  • Advertise your Partner in Quality status with a stamp to promote the program on your organization’s website or in communication materials.
  • Receive discounts on NCQA Recognition program data extracts

Add your organization to our Resource Directory of Incentives for NCQA Recognition.

How to Apply for Partner in Quality Program

To earn NCQA Partner in Quality status, an organization must demonstrate that it provides qualifying financial incentives or support services, at no cost to the practice, to practices seeking NCQA recognition. Qualifying support services are detailed below and should be substantive enough to lead practices to apply for NCQA Recognition within a reasonable period.

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Financial Support Examples
  • Covers the cost of NCQA Application Fees (does not include the 20% discount a Partner in Quality would pass along)
  • Provides Lump Sum Payment for Recognition
  • Includes NCQA Recognition in Enhanced Payment Structure (e.g. enhanced fee-for-service, care management fee, shared savings, etc.) Health Plans Only
In-Kind Assistance Examples
  • Self-Assessment / Gap Analysis to assist practice in identifying areas to focus transformation efforts
  • Learning Collaborative Support
  • Onsite Training / Technical Assistance
  • Care Management Support
  • Inclusion of NCQA Recognition as Criteria for Inclusion in "Preferred Provider" Networks on Consumer Facing Directories (Health Plans Only)
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