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Provider Engagement Initiative

In a recent announcement, CMS declared their plans to launch a provider engagement initiative to improve the clinician experience in the Medicaid program. Reports indicate that the development of value-based care models under the MACRA and Affordable Care Act might be the main reason behind this initiative.

CMS pointed out that the patient experience has considerably shifted to include enhanced care coordination, robust quality reporting, and other value-based reimbursement requirements. Now, the agency hopes to bring a better clinician experience by assessing factors such as gathering provider feedback, reducing administrative burden, and regulations and policies, through the latest initiative.

Acting Administrator for CMS, Andy Slavitt, stated in a press release that, “Physicians and their care teams are the most vital resource a patient has. As we implement the Quality Payment Program under MACRA, we cannot do it without making a sustained, long-term commitment to take a holistic view on the demands on the physician and clinician workforce.”

“The new initiative will launch a nationwide effort to work with the clinician community to improve Medicare regulations, policies, and interaction points to address issues and to help get physicians back to the most important thing they do taking care of patients,” he added.

The clinician engagement initiative will be headed by CMS Deputy Administrator and Director, Shantanu Agrawal. This program will address existing provider relationships and clinical documentation requirements with CMS and other provider experience components. Reports also confirm that all ten CMS regional offices will take part in the latest CMS initiative.

The regional CMS offices will collect provider feedback by conducting local meeting within the next six months. The regular meetings will only be held after the conclusion of these local meetings, where the CMS offices could report recommendations and share their concerns to the federal agency’s Administrator in next year.

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Value-Based Care Initiative

“CMS is turning a new page in assessing not only how to reward for quality, but also to reduce administrative hurdles. I look forward to hearing about what steps we can take to make the practice of medicine in Medicare more efficient and rewarding,” Agrawal said.

The agency is looking forward to simplify administrative burdens on healthcare providers by classifying them in certain Advanced Alternative Payment Models. The clinician engagement initiative would deal with the medical record reviews at first, and providers in selected Advanced Alterative Payment Models will not be accountable for justifying claims in the first 18-months of the program.

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