CMS Launches Value-Based Care Model Second Round
Tuesday, March 30th, 2021

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has begun accepting applications for the second cohort of the Primary Care First (PCF) value-based payment program, which aims to reduce costs while improving care quality.

The PCF model would investigate whether moving from fee-for-service to Medicare performance-based compensation could improve patient quality and lower total Medicare costs as the healthcare industry transitions toward value-based care delivery.

Participating practices in qualifying areas will be credited with better health outcomes through the model’s performance-based payment changes. Furthermore, unlike conventional fee-for-service practices, these practices would have greater flexibility in tweaking their treatment delivery methods to meet the demands of specific patient groups.

Primary Care First is focused on the concepts of the current Comprehensive Primary Care Plus (CPC+) model architecture, which concentrates on incentivizing good health results, prioritizing the doctor-patient partnership, and improving care for patients with diverse chronic needs. It was developed with feedback from primary care clinician stakeholders.

The model aims to enhance advanced primary care for both practices and patients by basing Medicare rates on quality of care rather than quantities of resources. To increase patient outcomes, performance-based payments would allow practices to emphasize patient-provider partnerships, patient engagement, and care management.

The PCF model comprises a portion of the HHS Primary Care Initiative, which was announced in April 2019, which seeks to reduce administrative pressures and healthcare expenses while boosting care quality.

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