Policy-Advocacy

Medicare’s Protected Classes of Drugs

CMS is proposing to give Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage plans the option to limit coverage of drugs in six categories — known as the “protected classes” — in a bid to lower pharmaceutical costs. The agency posted a proposed rule in the Federal Register on Nov. 30, available for public comment through Jan. 25, that would give health plans the ability to exclude protected class drugs from medication prescription lists in certain instances.

The Kidney Health Initiative (KHI) Year in Review

“What I have learned more than anything else, is that if you get talented and committed people from different backgrounds together, then wonderful and impactful things just seem to happen.” Prabir Roy-Chaudhury, MD, PhD, FASN, ASN Co-Chair for the Kidney Health Initiative

Survey: What Kinds of Doctors Use Telemedicine?

New survey results published in the medical journal Health Affairs provide the  first-ever nationally representative estimates of telemedicine use by U.S. doctors. Telemedicine use was more common at larger, multi-speciality practices and  hospitals — evidence that financial burdens continue to be a barrier for smaller  physician-owned practices, according to the study authors.

Reminder: CMS 2017 Open Payments data available for review and dispute until December 31

Program Year 2017 Open Payments data is available for review and dispute through December 31, 2018.

CMS Proposes Rule Change to Medicare Part D Exemptions for "Protected" Classes of Drugs

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a proposed rule yesterday, November 26, 2018, that includes changes to Medicare Advantage and Part D. Medicare says its proposal will give Part D drug plans more power to negotiate with pharmaceutical companies, but some patient and provider groups say that it will reduce access and shift costs onto beneficiaries.

Telehealth Use Up 65 Percent from 2014-16

Please see more information on telehealth in a recent Kidney News Online post by David White, the ASN Policy and Advocacy Specialist.

US Midterm Elections Bring Healthcare Changes in States

Results of state ballot initiatives in this week’s US elections involving healthcare in Idaho, Nebraska, Utah, Alabama, West Virginia, Maine, Massachusetts, and California.

2019 MIPS Payment Information released by Medicare

Today, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released finalized 2017 performance data for the Quality Payment Program (QPP) that will be used to determine clinician reimbursement adjustments for calendar year 2019 – the first year for adjusted payments under the new program.

Medicare Releases FInal Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) Rule, Including Revisions to E&M Codes

Thursday afternoon, November 1, Medicare released the final Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) rule containing some revisions to evaluation and management (E&M) codes in terms of documentation requirements but no changes in reimbursement levels for the next two years – but year three is another matter. 

KidneyX Innovators Showcase at Kidney Week 2018

KidneyX_logo_1.PNGTo inspire creative solutions that will improve the treatment of kidney diseases, the first KidneyX Innovators Showcase was held on Saturday, October 29, 2018 at the American Society of Nephrology’s annual Kidney Week conference.

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