The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is about to try four different strategies for bundling provider payments.
CMS is organizing the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement testing program to implement Section 3021 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010.
PPACA Section 3021 requires CMS to try to hold down the cost of care by experimenting with new strategies for paying for care.
Section drafters wrote the section because of concerns that one reason for the high cost of the U.S. acute health care system may be the typical fee-for-service approach to paying for care, especially at the traditional Medicare program.
Today, officials say, Medicare providers get paid for each service provided, no matter what the outcome is.
CMS officials want to come up with a system for paying a provider based on care for a single episode of care, such as treating a ruptured appendix or a heart attack, in an effort to encourage the provider to provide the same level of care as efficiently as possible.