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Health Policy
December 4, 2015

On November 25, CMS shared the updated 2016 CMS Quality Strategy, which incorporates progress made in shifting Medicare payments from volume to value, including payment reform initiatives, as well as new requirements from the Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation Act of 2014 and the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 legislation. The 2016 CMS Quality Strategy helps to align all of CMS to:...

Health Policy
December 4, 2015

In response to feedback from stakeholders and partners of the National Partnership to Improve Dementia Care in Nursing Homes, CMS is sharing the revised survey materials that were developed for the 2014 Focused Dementia Care Survey Pilot and 2015 expansion effort. The intent is that facilities would use these tools to assess their own practices in providing resident care.

The tools can be accessed by clicking here....

Health Policy
December 4, 2015

On October 30, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued the final rule that updates the payment policies and payment rates for services furnished under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) on or after January 1, 2016. The rule changes several of the quality reporting initiatives associated with MPFS payments, including the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS).

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Health Policy
November 20, 2015

This week AMDA, submitted comments to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on their Request for Information (RFI) regarding the implementation of Alternative Payment Models (APMs) and Merit-Based Incentive Programs (MIPS) under the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA).

AMDA noted that “if properly implemented, the new physician payment framework will promote improvements in the delivery of care to Medicare patients.” To help clinicians make the transition to new care and delivery models and ensure access to high-quality care for all patients, AMDA...

Health Policy
November 20, 2015

his week the American Medical Association (AMA) House of Delegates (HoD) met to deliberate a number of policies at the 2015 Interim Meeting held in Atlanta, Georgia. During the meeting, attended by AMDA Delegate Eric Tangalos, MD, CMD, Alternate Delegate Rajeev Kumar, MD, CMD, and Director of Public Policy and Advocacy Alex Bardakh, MPP, the AMA HoD adopted a number of policies ranging from public health issues to physician value-based purchasing programs. Highlighting the list of policy directives to the AMA were resolutions asking the AMA to “seek exemptions from Meaningful Use penalties...

Health Policy
November 20, 2015

The Office of Inspector General for Health and Human Services (OIG) recently issued its 2016 Work Plan, which sets the agenda for its auditing and investigation in the year ahead. The broad mandate of the OIG is to eliminate fraud, waste and abuse. The work plan describes more than 100 initiatives, 43 of which are new, for the upcoming year. The plan focuses on a variety of different health care aspects including nursing homes, home health agencies, pharmacies and hospitals.

In the past, the OIG has had success with recovering Medicare payments for therapy in nursing homes. Now the...

Health Policy
November 20, 2015

Model supports quality and care improvements for patients’ transition from surgery to recovery

In 2014, more than 400,000 Medicare beneficiaries received a hip or knee replacement, costing more than $7 billion for the hospitalizations alone. Despite the high volume of these surgeries, quality and costs of care for these hip and knee replacement surgeries still vary greatly among providers. For instance, the rate of complications, like infections or implant failures, after surgery can be more than three times higher for procedures performed at some hospitals than others....

Health Policy
November 20, 2015

In discussions and comments received as part of the 2015 White House Conference on Aging (WHCOA), researchers, practitioners and other stakeholders highlighted the lack of research focusing on elder abuse as a major barrier to creating evidence-based solutions and developing policies that promote elder justice. Despite growing awareness of elder abuse, there remain significant evidence gaps in detecting, preventing, and intervening in elder abuse.

As a follow up to the WHCOA, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) held a workshop on October 30 on “Multiple Approaches to...

Health Policy
November 13, 2015

The Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation (IMPACT) Act of 2014 requires the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) to develop a prototype prospective payment system (PPS) spanning the post-acute care (PAC) settings, using the uniform assessment data gathered previously during the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Post-Acute Care Payment Reform Demonstration (PAC-PRD) (completed in 2011). The Act requires the Commission to submit a report by June 30, 2016, presenting an approach for a unified, cross-setting PAC payment system and, to the extent feasible,...

Health Policy
November 13, 2015

On October 6, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the final rule with comment for the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs. To keep you informed of changes to the programs and how to participate in 2015, CMS has also released three new FAQs providing clarification on how to attest to certain measures for health information exchange, patient electronic access, and other objectives that require patient action.

FAQ 12817
Question: For the Health Information Exchange objective for meaningful use in 2015
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