Healthcare Reforms Proposed to Save Medicare
We all know that change is constant. It is also necessary for survival. This is possibly the biggest reason why public healthcare, undoubtedly a major pillar of the U.S. economy, needs change to keep functioning properly and stay competitive and useful to the people it aims to serve.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Obama administration are passionately working to highlight, and reinforce, the advantages of Medicare in improving the health of the elderly citizens of the U.S. There is also an emphasis on the fact that Medicare is still the best means of getting quality healthcare coverage at the best prices.
With the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in action, Medicare beneficiaries and taxpayers have a strong reason to breathe easy now. With an aim to provide quality services, CMS has adopted a range of delivery refinement measures for the system. The proposed reforms are as follows:
- To provide new preventive benefits
- To invest in patient safety
- To impose strict quality standards on payments
- To offer new incentives for providers who deliver high-quality, coordinated care
The foremost effort is to deliver quality care with overall improvements by lowering the cost. It is a change that will be effective for Patients, Providers and Taxpayers.
As a result of this initiative, it is estimated that $120 billion would be saved for Medicare over the next five years.
As per CMS, here are some action plans:
- Recently, CMS has finalized new payment rules. It has planned to execute quality measures for the first time as part of a changeover— to a more value-based payment system. It is projected to save $55 billion.
- CMS has launched a venture to provide strong incentives for healthcare providers to expand and share solutions, and make those pockets of innovation, the norm. Besides, it announced a remarkable investment of up to $1 billion for public-private partnerships with ACA to refine quality, safety and affordability for all. This could save an extra $10 billion.
- CMS has proposed to run an anti-fraud campaign to fight waste, abuse and scam. To identify fraudulent billing patterns, it has developed sophisticated analytic capabilities. This will strengthen Medicare to a great extent.
- Patients will receive better coordinated care enrolled in Medicare. To sustain the endeavor, CMS is providing enhanced and faster processing of Medicare claims data.
- Expanding the use Electronic Health Records (EHR) is also on the cards, which will lead to a dramatic refinement of how patient’s medical records are accessed and used.
The signs forecast a brighter future for Medicare. However, only time will tell how far CMS would be successful in saving Medicare from losing the popularity and importance it now enjoys.