Heart of Health Policy

CMS Releases Final 2024 IPPS Rule

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has released the final Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) Rule for Fiscal Year 2024. The rule's provisions will go into effect starting Oct. 1. The increase in operating payment rates for general acute care hospitals paid under the IPPS was finalized at 3.1%, representing a 3.3% increase in the hospital market basket with a 0.2% reduction for the productivity adjustment.

Weighing the Pros and Cons of Restrictive Covenants and Noncompetes For Physicians

The fairness and utility of restrictive covenants and noncompete clauses in the physician community is explored in a recent Viewpoint published in JACC: Advances.

Be On The Lookout: Physician Practice Information Survey Underway

Clinicians should monitor their email for important surveys on practice costs and work hours that are part of a national American Medical Association (AMA) study.

ACC Weighs In On New Episode-Based Payment Model

The ACC in August responded to a request for information from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) regarding a new episode based payment model.

The College, while welcoming an opportunity to work with the agency to develop value-based payment models that improve cardiovascular care for all and support practice sustainability, advises against a mandatory cardiovascular episode-based payment model based on the current BPCI-A framework of service line episodes.

According to the comment letter: "The College is of the opinion that the episode-based payment models developed for BPCI-A around cardiovascular care are insufficient and lack supportive performance and outcomes data to warrant transitioning to mandatory. The current cardiology-related models have not engaged CV clinicians in value-based care, rather many of our members withdrew from BPCI-A due to shifting benchmarks, expanded episodes and lack of timely, actionable data."

The ACC's comments specifically address concerns around care delivery and incentive structure alignment: clinical episodes; participants; health equity; quality measures, interoperability, and multi-payer alignment; payment methodology and structure; and model overlap.

The request for information will inform a proposed rule being developed by CMMI. "The ACC supports CMMI's intent to drive accountable care though we disagree with the methods employed to date," says ACC President B. Hadley Wilson, MD, FACC, in the comment letter. "…The ACC looks forward to reviewing the forthcoming proposed rule and providing comment to guide the next iteration of a model to engage specialists in value-based accountable care."

On Deck in October

Whether you're attending the ACC's 2023 Legislative Conference in Washington, DC, or planning to catch the highlights on social media, be sure to use #ACCLegConf and #ACCAdvocacy and tag @ACCinTouch to contribute to discussions. You can find the agenda, briefing materials and more on ACC.org/LegislativeConference.

Look for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to release the final 2024 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule and the final 2024 Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System (HOPPS) rule in late October or early November. The ACC Advocacy Team will post highlights from both rules as soon as they are available. Stay tuned to ACC.org/Advocacy and the "The Advocate" newsletter for updates.

Clinical Topics: Cardiac Surgery, Cardiovascular Care Team, Invasive Cardiovascular Angiography and Intervention, Aortic Surgery

Keywords: ACC Publications, Cardiology Magazine, Health Policy, ACC Advocacy, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, U.S., Atherectomy, Cardiologists, Physicians, Workforce, Medicaid, Medicare

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