Late Thursday evening, June 4, Blair Childs, senior vice president, public affairs, at the Charlotte-based Premier, Inc., released a statement on behalf of the health alliance, responding to that day's announcement on the part of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) regarding changes being made to the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) for accountable care organizations (ACOs).
In his statement, Childs began by saying that "Members o the Premier healthcare alliance applaud the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) for adopting vital chnges to the regulations governing the implementation of the Medicare Shared Savings Progra (MSSP). With this rule, we are taking a significant step forward in the ongoing journey to provide more coordinated, cost-effective healthcare to millions of Medicare beneficiaries."
Childs went on to praise, among other things, CMS's "decision to allow providers to remain in the one-sided risk option in Track 1 without a reduction in the shared savings percentage, and to allow choices in minimum savings rates for Tracks 2 and 3 that will help level the playing field for smaller accountable care organizations (ACOs)." He also praised CMS officials' moving towards a more "streamlined data sharing process," which he said "will reduce beneficiary confusion and provider burden, while at the same time providing more timely and actionable data. Taken together," he said, "these changes will help to remove many of the key hurdles that were inhibiting provider success."
But Childs said it was "extremely concerning that CMS was not willing to extend certain payment waivers to ACOs, despite a plurality of commenters recommending this course of action."
Healthcare Informatics will continue to update readers on this developing story.