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CMS Finalizes Joint Bundled Payment, Outpatient Changes

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) finalized cancellation of the mandatory hip fracture and cardiac bundled payment models that were to be operated by the CMS Innovation Center and implemented changes to the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement (CJR) bundled payment model.

These changes will offer greater flexibility and choice for hospitals in providing care to Medicare patients, according to CMS.

“While CMS continues to believe that bundled payment models offer opportunities to improve quality and care coordination while lowering spending, we believe that focusing on developing different bundled payment models and engaging more providers is the best way to drive health system change while minimizing burden and maintaining access to care,” CMS Administrator Seema Verma said, in a release.

Ms. Verma expects to announce new voluntary bundles at a later, unspecified date. In the final rule, CMS reduced the number of mandatory geographic areas participating in CJR from 67 areas to 34. CMS is also making participation voluntary for all low-volume and rural hospitals in all 67 areas.

Read on for more details abut these CMS changes, cancellations and finalizations.