CMS Releases 32 Quality Measures Under Consideration for 2018 | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

CMS Releases 32 Quality Measures Under Consideration for 2018

December 1, 2017
by Rajiv Leventhal
| Reprints

Following up on its “Meaningful Measures” announcement that aims to streamline quality measures and reduce regulatory burdens, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has posted 32 quality measures that are currently under consideration and open for public comment.

 CMS Administrator Seema Verma announced the “Meaningful Measures” initiative last October, with the goal to involve only assessing those core issues that are most vital to providing high-quality care and improving patient outcomes. Through its development, the agency aims to focus on outcome-based measures going forward, as opposed to trying to micromanage processes.

According to CMS, each year the federal agency publishes a list of quality and cost measures that are under consideration for Medicare quality reporting and value-based purchasing programs, and collaborates with the National Quality Forum (NQF) to get input from multiple stakeholders, including patients, families, caregivers, clinicians, commercial payers and purchasers, on the measures that are best suited for these programs. Ultimately, these measures may help patients choose the nursing home, hospital, or clinician that is best for them, and can help providers to provide the highest quality of care across care settings, according to CMS.

This year’s measures under consideration (MUC) List contains 32 measures; CMS is considering new measures to help quantify healthcare outcomes and track the effectiveness, safety and patient-centeredness of the care provided, the agency said in a press release.  “At the same time, CMS is taking a new approach to coordinated implementation of meaningful quality measures focused on the most critical, highly impactful areas for improvement while reducing the burden of quality reporting on all providers so they can spend more time with their patients,” the announcement said.  

In addition to other factors, CMS said it evaluated the measures on the MUC list to ensure that measures considered for adoption in a CMS program through rulemaking as necessary, focus on clearly defined, meaningful measure priority areas that safeguard public health and improve patient outcomes. 

For example, to generate this year’s MUC list, CMS considered 184 measures submitted by stakeholders during an open call for measures.  Considering the meaningful measurement areas, CMS narrowed the list to 32 measures (17 percent of the original submissions). “CMS will continue to use the Meaningful Measures approach to strategically assess the development and implementation of quality measure sets that are the most parsimonious and least burdensome, that are well understood by external stakeholders, and are most likely to drive improvement in health outcomes,” the agency stated.

This year, approximately 40 percent of measures on the MUC list are outcome measures, including patient-reported outcome measures. In addition, this year there are eight episode-based cost measures proposed that were developed by incorporating the insight of clinicians and specialty societies.

The National Quality Forum has already said that it has begun its annual review of the 32 measures. NQF’s Measure Applications Partnership (MAP) brings together stakeholders from the private and public sectors to provide guidance to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on the selection of performance measures for federal public reporting and payment programs, including the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS).

The list of measures under consideration is open for initial public comment through Dec. 7, and MAP will deliver its measure recommendations to HHS by Feb. 1, 2018.

Get the latest information on Health IT and attend other valuable sessions at this two-day Summit providing healthcare leaders with educational content, insightful debate and dialogue on the future of healthcare and technology.

Learn More

Topics

News

Advocate Aurora Health, Foxconn Plan Employee Wellness, “Smart City,” and Precision Medicine Collaboration

Wisconsin-based Advocate Aurora Health is partnering with Foxconn Health Technology Business Group, a Taiwanese company, to develop new technology-driven healthcare services and tools.

Healthcare Data Breach Costs Remain Highest at $408 Per Record

The cost of a data breach for healthcare organizations continues to rise, from $380 per record last year to $408 per record this year, as the healthcare industry also continues to incur the highest cost for data breaches compared to any other industry, according to a new study from IBM Security and the Ponemon Institute.

Morris Leaves ONC to Lead VA Office of Electronic Health Record Modernization

Genevieve Morris, who has been detailed to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) from her position as the principal deputy national coordinator for the Department of Health and Human Services, will move over full time to lead the newly establishment VA Office of Electronic Health Record Modernization.

Cedars-Sinai Accelerator Program Presents Fourth Class of Startups

The Cedars-Sinai Accelerator, a program that helps entrepreneurs bring their innovative technology products to market, has brought in nine more health tech startups as part of its fourth class.

DirectTrust Adds Five Board Members

DirectTrust, a nonprofit organization that support health information exchange, announced the appointment of five new executives to its board of directors.

Analysis: Many States Continue to Have Restrictive Telemedicine Policies

State Medicaid programs are evolving to accelerate the adoption of telemedicine models, this evolution is occurring more quickly in some states than others, according to a recent analysis by Manatt Health.