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CMS Unveils ACA-Driven Innovation Center

Jeff Elliott for HealthLeaders Media, November 16, 2010

New details emerged Tuesday about the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' anticipated Innovation Center. In an announcement, CMS Administrator Donald Berwick and center Director Richard Gilfillan formally introduced the ACA-directed program designed to research and test new means of providing and paying for healthcare.

CMS says it is consulting various stakeholders, including hospitals, physicians, health plans, and consumers, as it tests different care delivery and payment models, such as the patient-centered medical home (PCMH), in hopes of finding a more effective delivery system for Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries.

"By working together with innovative and committed providers, we can create a system that works better for everyone," said Gilfillan in a statement. "We want to identify, validate and scale models that have been effective in achieving better outcomes and improving the quality of care, but may be relatively unknown."

New initiatives the center will undertake include:

  • The Multi-Payer Advanced Primary Care Practice Demonstration, an eight-state, 1,200-member "medical home" project to evaluate the effectiveness of an integrated delivery model in which providers receive more coordinated care payments from Medicare, Medicaid and private health plans.
  • The Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) Advanced Primary Care Practice Demonstration to test how well providers working in teams are able to serve low-income patients at up to 500 community health centers.
  • A state "health home" plan option that allows Medicaid patients with at least two chronic conditions to designate a provider to help coordinate their treatment.