ACO roundup: CMS extends some 2016 quality reporting deadlines

Key accountable care news from the past week

The Daily Briefing editorial team rounds up recent accountable care news.

  • CMS extends some 2016 quality reporting deadlines. CMS this week gave eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals participating in the Hospital Inpatient Quality Reporting program and the Medicare EHR Incentive Program more time to submit their electronic clinical quality data, extending the deadline from Feb. 28 to March 13. CMS also announced that it plans to update to the Electronic Clinical Quality Improvement (eCQM) requirement included in its fiscal year 2017 Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) final rule. Those changes, which will be reflected in the fiscal year 2018 IPPS proposed rule, will "address stakeholder concerns regarding challenges associated with hospitals transitioning to new EHR systems or products" and other technical challenges, according to Kate Goodrich, director of CMS' Center for Clinical Standards and Quality.

  • Cigna CEO: ACOs are the best care model for ACA health plans. During the JP Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco last week, Cigna CEO David Cordani said its Affordable Care Act (ACA) health plans do best when they are delivered under an ACO model. However, despite Cigna's efforts to improve care coordination through ACOs, Cordani said he still expects the company to lose money on its health plans sold on the ACA's exchanges in 2017.

  • How Geisinger wants to 'transform health care at its core.' Geisinger Health System CEO David Feinberg last week unveiled Springboard Health, a population health initiative that will use genome sequencing, big data initiatives, and other technology to connect patients with social services offerings. The program will start with Springboard Healthy Scranton, through which Geisinger will collaborate with local stakeholders in Scranton, Pennsylvania, to manage chronic conditions, reduce preventable cancers, and improve the community's socioeconomic health. "When it comes to the social determinants of health, we know there are many more causes impacting the health of a population than access to quality medical care," Feinberg said in a statement. "We want to transform health care at its core by focusing on preventive care, behavioral health, and economic growth."

From Advisory Board:                            

  • 5 innovative trends driving care transformation. Beyond the initial opportunities to reduce avoidable cost, providers managing increasingly more lives under risk need to set a new standard for care transformation. Join us for a webconference on Wednesday, Jan. 25 to explore five trends in population health innovation and frontier strategies to advance your care transformation efforts.
  • What to do with CMS' new patient-facing encounter codes. CMS' recently published list of patient-facing encounter codes will affect which reporting requirements and performance metrics apply to clinicians within the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) under MACRA. Find out what "patient-facing" means for radiology, and get tools for leveraging this new list of codes.

  • 4 things to consider when designing a patient education program. Patient education programs are a critical step for empowering patients to take an active role in their health and wellness. As you build your program, make sure you can answer these four key questions.

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