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Society participates in AMA-led payment reform task force

Wisconsin Medical Society CEO Rick Abrams and Chris Rasch, the Society’s director of state and federal relations, participated in a meeting Tuesday in Washington D.C. as part of the AMA’s Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) of 2015 implementation task force. The Society is one of five state medical societies that are part of the task force.

MACRA repealed Medicare’s flawed sustainable growth rate formula earlier this year. (Read more in this Medigram Alert.) During this week’s meeting—the group’s second—task force members drafted principles for the implementation of MACRA to ensure that the new value-driven Medicare payment system is practical and fair.

General principles from the very detailed document developed by the group include that the new Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and Alternative Payment Model (APM) structures must ensure access to high quality care for all Medicare patients, be transparent, align programs and ease regulatory burdens, treat physicians fairly with accurate risk-adjustment and attribution methodologies, and be done with a gradual phase-in period.

Cindy Helstad, the Society’s director of research, also represented the Society at the AMA’s first APM sub-work group committee meeting. The committee is populated with technical experts and physicians working to make the new APM systems as practical and successful as possible.

Both meetings were timely; earlier this week, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services put out a request for information regarding the implementation of the MIPS and the APMs.

To help physicians redesign their practices in preparation for the payment and delivery changes that are part of MACRA and/or private payer initiatives, the AMA is developing and has available a number of tools. STEPS Forward is an interactive practice transformation series offering strategies designed to help physicians and their staffs thrive in the evolving health care environment by working smarter, not harder.

The Society looks forward to further participation in these important national committees. For more information, e-mail Chris Rasch.

Back to October 1, 2015 Medigram