What’s Ahead: This Week

Hearings –

  • Tuesday, November 28
    • House Committee on Oversight & Government Reform, “Combating the Opioid Crisis.” (Baltimore, Maryland)
  • Wednesday, November 29
    • Senate HELP Committee, “Nomination of Alex Azar to serve as Secretary of Health and Human Services.”
    • House Veterans Affairs Committee, “Examining VA’s Failure to Address Provider Quality and Safety Concerns.”
    • Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, “Markup of Pending Legislation: S. ___ Caring for Our Veterans Act of 2017.”
  • Thursday, November 30
    • Senate HELP Committee, “The Front Lines of the Opioid Crisis: Perspectives from States, Communities and Providers.”
    • House Energy & Commerce Committee, Health Subcommittee, “Implementing the 21st Century Cures Act: An Update from FDA and NIH.”

 Notable Policy Events –

  • Tuesday, November 28
    • CMS, “Meaningful Measures Initiative Webinar.” Additional information: http://bit.ly/2A2hGTh
    • Kaiser Family Foundation, “The Future of Delivery System Reform in Medicare.” Additional information: http://kaiserf.am/2jdEKqe
    • Health IT Now, “Time for Telehealth: Harnessing the Power of Health IT to Bring Medicare into the 21st” Additional information: http://bit.ly/2hKCuWZ
  • Tuesday, November 28 – Wednesday, November 29
    • ECRI Institute, “Workflow, Workarounds, and Overworked Health Systems: Innovations and Challenges for Quality, Safety, and Technology.” Additional information: http://bit.ly/2zZWSfe
  • Thursday, November 30
    • HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, “2017 ONC Annual Meeting: Tackling Barriers to Interoperability and Usability.”
  • Friday, December 1
    • Alliance for Health Policy, “What’s Next for Medicare Provider Payment?” Additional information: http://conta.cc/2A0x7eK

Weekly Wrap-Up: Notable Health Care Developments From Last Week

 Legislative Activity –

  • On November 21, Reps. Lamborn (R-CO), Meadows (R-NC), and Franks (R-AZ) introduced the Veterans Empowerment Act (H.R. 4457), which would establish the Veterans Accountable Care Organization and to provide veterans access to private health insurance plans. Press release: http://bit.ly/2hTchpa Bill text: http://bit.ly/2hTcCIs

 ACA Market Stabilization & Implementation –

  • On November 22, CMS released data showing that 798,829 consumers enrolled in coverage using Healthcare.gov in the third week of Open Enrollment, including 220,323 new consumers. Press release: http://go.cms.gov/2hJWDwm
  • Also on November 22, CMS released a fact sheet listing total fiscal year 2017 Navigator funding and facilitated enrollments. Fact sheet: http://go.cms.gov/2hLAU7i

Medicare –

  • On November 20, CMS announced the release of the CMS Measures Inventory Tool (CMIT), an interactive web-based application that contains a comprehensive list of quality measures that are currently under development, implemented for use, and have been removed from a CMS quality program or initiative. Blog post: http://bit.ly/2A1z9v4

New Payment and Delivery System Models –

  • On November 20, CMS announced the addition of 13 new hospitals to join 17 hospitals already participating in the Rural Community Hospital Demonstration. Information: http://bit.ly/2zZCGtO
  • On November 21, CMS released the final evaluation report for the Community-based Care Transitions program, which finds that participants exhibited lower readmission rates and expenditures relative to comparisons. Report: http://bit.ly/2hMRC6x
  • On November 22, CMS announced refinements to the design of the third year of the Medicare Advantage Value-Based Insurance Design model, including the expansion of the model to new states and new flexibility with respect to plan benefit design. Press release: http://go.cms.gov/2hJEBKJ Fact sheet: http://go.cms.gov/2hLIWwS Frequently Asked Questions: http://bit.ly/2hJEMWp

 Mental Health and Substance Abuse –

  • On November 21, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released final guidance to assist industry in their development of generic versions of approved abuse-deterrent opioid formulations. Statement: http://bit.ly/2A0aCqm Guidance: http://bit.ly/2A3mXKx

 Health IT –

  • On November 22, HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT announced the winners of the Patient Matching Algorithm Challenge. Press release: http://bit.ly/2hMQHTD