CMS Discusses Meaningful Measures Initiative


On Tuesday, November 28, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) presented a webinar on its new Meaningful Measures Initiative.  The Meaningful Measures Initiative was unveiled by CMS Administrator Seema Verma on October 30, 2017 at the Health Care Payment Learning and Action Network (LAN) Fall Summit. It aims to simplify current quality measure sets and reduce regulatory burden with quality reporting.

HIMSS is reviewing the measure information presented by CMS thus far and determining where it will be able to provide comments on the Framework.  HIMSS will share more information in the near-term.  

The CMS webinar reviewed the agency’s new approach to meaningful outcomes that revolve around:

  • Empowering patients and doctors to make decisions about their health care;
  • Ushering in a new era of state flexibility and local leadership;
  • Supporting innovative approaches to improve quality, accessibility and affordability; and
  • Improving the CMS customer experience.

A new Meaningful Measures Framework was revealed with a goal of achieving high quality healthcare and meaningful outcomes for patients. The framework draws on measure work by LAN, the National Quality Forum (NQF), and National Academies of Medicine – IOM Vital Signs Core Metrics. Embedded into the framework are six quality categories with meaningful measure areas listed under each category.  

The six quality categories include:

  1. Make Care Safer by Reducing Harm Cased in the Delivery of Care;
  2. Strengthen Person & Family Engagement as Partners in their Care;
  3. Promote Effective Communication & Coordination of Care;
  4. Promote Effective Prevention & Treatment of Chronic Disease;
  5. Work with Communities to Promote Best Practices of Healthy Living; and
  6. Make Care Affordable.

Additionally, CMS created a new CMS Measures Inventory Tool.  This tool is an interactive application that will provide stakeholders with improved transparency on quality measures. The tool provides a list of quality measures that are under development, measures that have been implemented for use and measures that have been removed from a CMS quality program or initiative.

Next steps for CMS relating to the Meaningful Measures Initiative include obtaining input from stakeholders to further improve the Meaningful Measures Framework, working across CMS components to implement the framework, and evaluating current measure sets and informing measure development.  The webinar slide deck, recording and transcript will be posted here on the CMS website in the coming weeks. For more information click here.