Today’s Top Story
CMS plans to add CJR, other models to 2018 QPP.
The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced more opportunities for clinicians to join Advanced Alternative Payment Models (APMs) to improve care and earn additional incentive payments under the Quality Payment Program (QPP). For the 2017 performance year, clinicians may earn a 5 percent incentive payment under the QPP through sufficient participation in a variety of Advanced APMs. In 2018, CMS anticipates that clinicians may also earn incentive payments through participation in the following new and existing models:

  • Medicare Accountable Care Organization (ACO) Track 1+ Model
  • New voluntary bundled payment model
  • Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement Payment Model (CJR) (Certified Electronic Health Record Technology (CEHRT) track)
  • Advancing Care Coordination through Episode Payment Models Track 1 (CEHRT track)

The agency states that the lists of QPP programs will continue to change and grow as more models are proposed and developed. Read more…

Other News

CMS announces Medicare-Medicaid Accountable Care Organization (ACO) Model.
CMS has also announced the Medicare-Medicaid ACO Model, which is designed to improve the quality of care and lower costs for beneficiaries who are enrolled in both Medicare and Medicaid. The agency states that in current Medicare ACO initiatives, beneficiaries who are Medicare-Medicaid enrollees may be attributed to ACOs, but Medicare ACOs often do not have financial accountability for Medicaid expenditures for those beneficiaries. The Medicare-Medicaid ACO Model will allow Medicare Shared Savings Program ACOs to take on accountability for the quality of care and both Medicare and Medicaid costs for Medicare-Medicaid enrollees. The Medicare-Medicaid ACO Model is open to all states and the District of Columbia that have a sufficient number of Medicare-Medicaid enrollees in fee-for-service Medicare and Medicaid. CMS will accept letters of intent from states that wish to work with the agency to design certain state-specific elements of the model. Once a state is approved to participate in the model, a request for application will be released to ACOs and healthcare providers in that state. Read more…

FDA bans use of powdered gloves for medical care.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has finalized a rule banning the use of powdered gloves in medicine due to safety concerns. The agency states that the gloves pose an unreasonable and substantial risk of illness or injury to healthcare providers, patients, and others, which cannot be corrected through new or updated labeling. The ban applies to powdered surgeon’s gloves, powdered patient examination gloves, and absorbable powder for lubricating a surgeon’s glove. Read more…
Read the rule…

Study: Ankle arthroplasty and arthrodesis patients often report satisfactory outcomes even when they fall short of complete recovery.
Data from a study published in the December issue of the journal Foot & Ankle International suggest that the conventional definition of a satisfactory outcome following ankle arthroplasty and arthrodesis may be inadequate. The researchers conducted a cross-sectional survey of 85 ankle arthroplasty and 15 ankle arthrodesis patients. Based on survey responses, the researchers categorized patients as “Recovered-Resolved” (better with no symptoms or residual effects), “Recovered, not Resolved” (better with residual effects), or “Not Recovered.” They found that only 15 percent of patients were considered Recovered-Resolved, while 69 percent were Recovered, not Resolved and 14 percent were Not Recovered. However, Recovered-Resolved and Recovered, not Resolved patients had similarly high satisfaction summary scores. The researchers argue that, as patients’ perceptions of satisfactory outcomes were not predicated on the resolution of all limitations, the conventional definition of satisfactory outcomes should be expanded accordingly. Read the abstract…

Point-of-service collections may reduce unpaid medical bills, but at what cost?
An article in Kaiser Health News notes that, in an effort to maximize collections, many clinicians and hospitals are contracting with companies to help them secure payments from patients in advance of care. The writer states that approximately three-quarters of healthcare systems request payment at the time services are provided in a practice known as “point-of-service collections.” An analysis of 400,000 claims conducted by research and consulting firm The Advisory Board found that, the higher their deductible, the less likely patients are to pay what they owe. However, critics of the practice of point-of-service collections note that the approach can make it more difficult to contest an incorrect medical bill. Read more…

Submit your entries now! MORE Awards honor excellence in orthopaedic journalism.
The Media Orthopaedic Reporting Excellence (MORE) Awards recognize and honor journalistic efforts that further the public’s understanding of musculoskeletal health issues and encourage healthy behaviors in the care of bones and joints. AAOS is asking members to submit stories from broadcast, radio, print, or websites that accurately and compassionately highlight orthopaedic procedures, treatments, and preventive care and practices. Stories must have been published or broadcast between Oct. 1, 2015, and Oct. 1, 2016. Winners will be recognized at the 2017 MORE Awards ceremony and dinner during the National Orthopaedic Leadership Conference in Washington, D.C., on April 27, 2017. For more information, please contact Kelly King Johnson at 847-384-4033. To enter a submission, please email the story link to:
Learn more…

Call for volunteers: CMS panel on hospital harm performance measure.
AAOS seeks to nominate members to the CMS Technical Expert Panel on Hospital Harm Performance Measure. The goal of the panel is to develop a hospital-level electronic health record-based performance measure of multiple dimensions of patient harm or adverse patient safety events that can be improved with high quality care. Applicants for this position must be active fellows, candidate members, candidate members osteopathic, candidate member applicants for fellowship, or candidate member applicants for fellowship osteopathic. In addition, all applicants must provide the following: an online AAOS CAP application, a current curriculum vitae, a 100-word biosketch, a letter of interest highlighting their expertise in the subject area, and a signed nomination form, available from the email below. All supporting materials must be submitted by Sunday, Jan. 8, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. CT, to Stephanie Hazlett at:
Learn more and submit your application…(member login required)