MedPAC Leaves Radiology Alone in June Report to Congress

by User Not Found | Jul 01, 2014
In perhaps a case of "no news is good news," the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission's (MedPAC) June 2014 report to Congress raises questions about how to revise Medicare payment policies, but it does not contain any new recommendations for imaging. Medicare currently finances care through a traditional fee-for-service (FFS) structure, Medicare Advantage (MA) health plans, and, more recently, accountable care organizations (ACOs), which are a variation of FFS. Each model brings different and sometimes conflicting payment, risk adjustment, and quality measurement policies, MedPAC said.

In perhaps a case of "no news is good news," the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission's (MedPAC) June 2014 report to Congress raises questions about how to revise Medicare payment policies, but it does not contain any new recommendations for imaging. Medicare currently finances care through a traditional fee-for-service (FFS) structure, Medicare Advantage (MA) health plans, and, more recently, accountable care organizations (ACOs), which are a variation of FFS. Each model brings different and sometimes conflicting payment, risk adjustment, and quality measurement policies, MedPAC said.

"This report represents the beginning of a dialogue within MedPAC about how Medicare's policies across FFS, MA, and ACOs might evolve and how these differing policies might affect beneficiaries, providers, and taxpayers," said Glenn Hackbarth, chairman of the commission, in a statement. The report discusses the need to measure inappropriate use of services, using imaging as one example of services that need to be monitored. MedPAC acknowledged that it can be difficult to define "clinically meaningful" quality measures for some specialties -- including radiology -- but said that it will continue its research. The commission plans to continue to explore overuse measurement as another way to improve quality, because of the potential for harm to beneficiaries and wasteful program spending that result from overuse,” the report states.

 
 
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