Healthcare Business News

CMS announces participants in primary-care initiative

By Rich Daly
Posted: August 22, 2012 - 12:15 pm ET

The CMS named the 500 primary-care practices that will participate in a provider-payer coordination pilot program aimed at improving care for Medicare beneficiaries and other patients.

The Comprehensive Primary Care Initiative, which involves seven federally sponsored regional pilot sites nationwide, will offer bonus payments to participating primary-care physicians who better coordinate their patients' care.

The participating practices are in eight states: Arkansas, Colorado, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Kentucky, Oklahoma and Oregon. The regions in those states were selected in April based on the percentage of the total population covered by payers who expressed interest in joining the pilot project, according to the CMS.

Participating physicians will receive a care management fee, which will average $20 for each beneficiary monthly, to help cover the cost of improved service coordination for patients.

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The practices were chosen to participate in the four-year program through a competitive application process that considered their use of health information technology and knowledge of advanced primary-care delivery models.

The more than 2,000 participating providers will serve at least 300,000 Medicare beneficiaries, according to the CMS. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation is administering the program.

“Primary-care practices play a vital role in our healthcare system, and we are looking at ways to better support them in their efforts to coordinate care for their patients,” Marilyn Tavenner, acting administrator of the CMS, said in a news release.

Also participating in the program are commercial, state and other federal insurance plans, which will provide to primary-care practices their own enhanced payments for improved care coordination.

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