HIMSS Comments on Physician Fee Schedule Proposed Rule

In a letter to the Administrator for the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Seema Verma, HIMSS provided our membership feedback to the Notice of Proposed Rule-Making (NPRM) on the Revisions to Payment Policies Under the Physician Fee Schedule and Other Revisions to Part B for CY 2018; Medicare Shared Savings Program Requirements; and Medicare Diabetes Prevention Program.

HIMSS applauds CMS for recognizing the value of remote patient monitoring, telehealth services, and other information and communications technology (ICT) enabled services. In their soliciting of input on how the Medicare program coverage, payment, and reimbursement policies should evolve, CMS has signaled its leadership in accelerating physician adoption of these healthcare delivery modalities that are transforming the practice of medicine.

HIMSS encourages CMS to embrace a reimbursement system that recognizes the unique characteristics of connected health that enhances the care experience for the patient, providers, and caregivers:

  • Collaborative decision-making involving diverse care-teams. Decisions are no longer just between a doctor and patient. Connected technologies allow for the incorporation of a patient’s family and trusted advisors, as well as other allied health professionals, in the decision-making process.
  • Expanded care locations and always-on monitoring. When patients are always connected, care (the interpretation of data and decision support) can occur at any time and in any place.
  • A reliance on technology, connectivity, and devices. Connected health involves communication systems using a variety of components; these may be managed by the provider, the patient, or other parties in the care team.
  • Empowerment tools and trackers that enable patients to become active members of the care continuum outside of the hospital setting, and promote long-term engagement which, in turn, leads to a healthier population.

HIMSS strongly recommends that CMS work with a wide array of stakeholders to incorporate ideas into a new payment paradigm that will support the shift to value based care models.

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