CMS Proposes Changes to Quality Payment Program

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is working to streamline program requirements and reduce burden on clinicians who are participating in the Quality Payment Program, especially for those who are in small, independent and rural practices.

On June 20, CMS issued a proposed rule that, if finalized, would make changes to the second year of the Quality Payment Program, which is 2018. The changes simplify reporting requirements and provide added flexibility for clinicians who are participating in the program. 

Since January 2017, CMS has engaged more than 100 stakeholder groups and 47,000 people, including doctors and clinicians, to solicit valuable feedback to help continue to improve the program.

“We’ve heard the concerns that too many quality programs, technology requirements, and measures get between the doctor and the patient,” said CMS Administrator Seema Verma, in a statement. “By proposing this rule, we aim to improve Medicare by helping doctors and clinicians concentrate on caring for their patients rather than filling out paperwork. CMS will continue to listen and take actionable steps towards alleviating burdens and improving health outcomes for all Americans that we serve.”

Updates to the Quality Payment Program occur annually as required by the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA). Clinicians can choose how they participate in the program based on location, practice size, specialty or patient population. Clinicians who participate in Medicare serve more than 57 million seniors.

View a fact sheet to learn more about the proposed changes or download the proposed rule from the Federal Register. There is a 60-day comment period for the proposed rule and comments are due August 21.

Learn more about the Quality Payment Program.