Several organizations have issued statements reacting to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services decision to launch four new Medicare bundled payment programs. Among the organizations:

American Medical Association

"The American Medical Association (AMA) appreciates CMS' responsiveness to our interest in bundled payments.  We are pleased the initiative provides flexibility and a range of models.  This may be an important opportunity to learn how to organize these approaches to improve patient care, quality, cost of care, and practice economics.

 "We look forward to reviewing the details of the application criteria, and we urge CMS to encourage applications for physician-led bundling initiatives.  We urge CMS to be prepared to provide technical assistance and data to interested physicians who may not have experience with bundled payment models."

National Partnership for Women & Families

"The Bundled Payments Initiative, announced by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services yesterday, is the kind of innovative payment reform that offers real promise for improving the quality and coordination of health care.  This initiative is well worth testing and we commend the Administration for its flexible approach to incentivizing providers to test it.

"At a time when patients, and especially those with multiple chronic health problems, are left to fend for themselves in a health care system in which many providers do not talk to each other and care is fragmented, we urgently need new approaches that will improve communication, collaboration and coordination across providers and settings.  This kind of payment reform has the potential to do just that and promote better continuity of care, fewer errors and ultimately lower costs for the program and patients.

"All patients and their family caregivers - and especially those who are most vulnerable and are heavy users of the health care system -- have a tremendous amount at stake as reform is implemented.  We applaud the Administration for incentivizing Medicare providers to make meaningful changes in how they deliver care so that patients receive better care, with better results, at lower cost."

Premier Healthcare Alliance

"Members of the Premier healthcare alliance commend the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) for new bundled payment programs aimed at fostering the movement toward team-based, coordinated care.

"As we have learned from members of the Premier Accountable Care Collaboratives, health systems are at different points in their journey to deliver coordinated care.  Some are prepared to accept population-based risk, while others require more time, resources, knowledge and experience. This new alternative to the Medicare shared savings program will provide an on-ramp to those systems beginning the journey to full continuum accountable care, while reinforcing the alternative payment arrangements they may already have underway with private payors.

"Members of the Premier alliance are committed to moving away from our fragmented and inefficient healthcare system in a variety of markets, including the Medicare population, commercial markets, self-funded employers, provider-sponsored plans and Medicaid. Fundamental payment reform is needed to align incentives.  These demonstration projects provide the flexibility and payment innovation needed step away from our broken fee-for-service system toward alternatives that can reward quality and cost effective care."


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