Last month, Andy Slavitt, Acting Administrator of the Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services (CMS) alluded to changes that could affect Meaningful Use. At the Annual Policy Institute of the National Rural Health Association this month, Slavitt addressed some of the further goals his organization has for this year while acknowledging the major events in health IT that occurred during 2015.
According to Slavitt, these accomplishments include supporting data transparency within healthcare and overseeing 17 million newly insured individuals under the Affordable Care Act. Slavitt also referenced the successful implementation of ICD-10, which he describes as "the Y2K that never happened."
"Incentives for providers will focus more on outcomes that the use of technology itself."
Going forward, he noted that incentives for providers will focus more on outcomes that the use of technology itself. CMS will also concentrate on incorporating smaller companies into the health IT conversation, while focusing on perennial issues like interoperability and serving rural communities. The organization will address the latter concern with a newly launched CMS Rural Health Council.
Despite Slavitt's comments, not all think that MACRA will replace MU entirely, as Slavitt has suggested. TechTarget writer Shaun Sutner explained the more nuanced realities awaiting health legislation.
"Essentially, what MACRA does, in addition to repealing the so-called Sustainable Growth Rate formula and thereby shielding physicians from automatic annual Medicare rate cuts, is provide a legal framework for the national shift toward value-based Medicare reimbursement," he said.
For a detailed plan for avoiding transition issues, providers have healthcare consulting firms as a resource for informed advisory. These experts will conduct necessary research and guidance tasks to make adapting to the new strategies put forth by CMS easy and efficient.