It is widely recognized by policymakers and payers that our nation’s healthcare system is fragmented, creating gaps in care for patients. Researchers believe that part of this fragmentation is a result of the separate payments furnished by Medicare for each provider type that a patient may encounter during a single care episode.
This assertion led to the Bundled Payment for Care Improvement (BPCI) initiative, which was established under the Affordable Care Act.
What Is the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement Initiative?
Under the authority established within the Affordable Care Act, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) created the “Innovation Center” with the responsibility of supporting and testing innovative payment and delivery care service models. The goal of the efforts is to deliver higher quality, more coordinated care at a lower cost.
Because evidence-based research has shown that a bundled payment for care provided across settings may align incentives across provider type and encourage them to work collaboratively, bundled payments are among the models being tested within the Innovation Center.
What Implications Will Bundled Payments Have on Patient Care?
Within a healthcare system that is seeking to recognize and reward value over volume – patients are the clear winners within the equation. Bundled payments, as well as other health reforms such as Accountable Care Organizations and patient-centered Medical Homes, build in financial incentives that encourage enhanced care management and closer alignment among clinicians and providers. This collaboration will contribute to fewer gaps in the delivery of medical care. Read Full Post