Your Government at Work

HHS Released Guidance for Clinicians on Opioid Tapering 

The Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) released a guide to help clinicians contemplating or initiating reduction in opioid dosage or discontinuation of long-term opioid therapy for chronic pain.  The guide includes important considerations for clinicians as well as important steps to take prior to deciding to taper or initiating a taper.  In addition, the guide contains an opioid tapering flowchart as well as other educational resources for clinicians on opioid use disorder.  HHS hopes the guide will provide more resources for clinicians to best help patients achieve the dual goals of effective pain management and reduction in the risk of addiction.

CMS Updates MIPS APM Participation Status Tool

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”) updated its alternative payment model (“APM”) participation status tool for the 2019 Quality Payment Program, which identifies eligible clinicians who qualify as advanced APM participants based on Medicare Part B claims data through June 2019.  These clinicians are eligible to receive a 5 percent APM Incentive Payment in 2021 and are exempt from participating in the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (“MIPS”).

CMS Sends Final Rule on ESRD Prospective Payment System, Quality Incentive Program, and DMEPOS to OMB

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”) sent the final rule with changes to the End-Stage Renal Disease (“ESRD”) Prospective Payment System, Quality Incentive Program, Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics and Supplies (“DMEPOS”) to the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) for CY 2020.  The annual proposed rule would update the bundled payment system for ESRD facilities by January 1, 2020.  The final rule would also update the quality incentives in the ESRD program and implement changes to the DMEPOS competitive bidding program.

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