Implementation of MACRA Has Started

Last week, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released the first proposed update to the physician payment schedule since the repeal of the Sustainable Growth Rate through the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA).  The proposal includes a number of provisions focused on person-centered care, and continues to transform the Medicare program to a system based on quality and healthy outcomes.

In the proposed CY 2016 Physician Fee Schedule rule, CMS is also seeking comment from the public on implementation of certain provisions of the MACRA, including  the new Merit-based Incentive payment system (MIPS).

The proposed rule includes updates to payment policies, proposals to implement statutory adjustments to physician payments based on misvalued codes, updates to the Physician Quality Reporting System, which measures the quality performance of physicians participating in Medicare, and updates to the Physician Value-Based Payment Modifier, which ties a portion of physician payments to performance on measures of quality and cost.  CMS also is seeking comment on the potential expansion of the Comprehensive Primary Care Initiative, a CMS Innovation Center initiative designed to improve the coordination of care for Medicare beneficiaries.

The proposed rule also seeks comment on a proposal that supports patient- and family-centered care for seniors and other Medicare beneficiaries by enabling them to discuss advance care planning with their providers. The proposal follows the American Medical Association’s recommendation to make advance care planning services a separately payable service under Medicare.

The release of the rule triggers a 60-day comment period, during which time CMS welcomes the input of stakeholders and the public.  A final rule will be published this fall. A fact sheet on the proposed rule.  More information and the rule itself.

This is just the first in a series of opportunities to give feedback on the implementation of MACRA.

North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) members have access to up-to-date information on a variety of quality of care initiatives on the “Quality Time With NCMS” webpage. [If you have not registered on our website, please do so to gain access to this page and its valuable resources and analysis. Simply click on the login button at the top right of the homepage.]


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