The Relative Value Scale Update Committee (RUC) is an extension of the American Medical Association (AMA) and national medical specialty societies and serves as an expert panel in developing recommendations for relative value units (RVUs) to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The RUC is composed of 31 members, 21 of whom are appointed by major medical societies to represent the views and concerns of both patients and providers within that specialty.
The RUC evaluates medical services across the entire spectrum of medicine and recommends a relative value for each medical service relative to other services. The recommendations provided by the RUC are reviewed by CMS which then accepts or modifies the RUC's RVU recommendation. RVUs are incorporated into the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) which ultimately determines physician reimbursement. The MPFS is updated annually. Private insurers often base reimbursement determinations on CMS reimbursement amounts.
The RUC offers an opportunity for medical specialty societies to provide input into the process when the RUC reviews new, revised, or potentially misvalued codes. If you receive a RUC survey it is imperative that you (the physician) take the time to submit an accurate and complete survey. The number of completed surveys is taken into consideration in determining the strength of the assessment and recommendations of the RUC.