Sunday, April 19, 2009

Support the Patient Centered Primary Care Collaborative

The Disease Management Care Blog has been alerted to the posting of a copy of an important letter addressed to Charlene Frizzera, CMS' Acting Administrator and Peter Orszag of the OMB expressing concern over possible changes in the upcoming Medicare Medical Home demonstration. The letter is from the folks over at the Patient Centered Primary Care Collaborative. Apparently, OMB is actively considering restricting participation in the demonstration to primary care sites that have obtained Tier III recognition in the NCQA's Patient Practice Connections/Patient Centered Medical Home (PCC-PCMH). As readers may recall, Medicare initially planned to use its own Level I and II certification process.

The letter correctly points out that, while it was going to be difficult for small physician owned practices to participate at a Level I or II, it will be far more difficult for these clinics to attain the highest NCQA Tier III level. It takes considerable resources to attain this, and the inevitable failure to do so will effectively shut out about 1/2 of all the U.S. primary care physicians from participation. As a result, we will have no idea if the the Medical Home is a viable and generalizable option in fee for service Medicare in all corners of the country.

What are they thinking?

You're welcome to sign onto the letter to express your concern. Readers can contact Relja Ugrinic, at, directly by COB Tuesday, April 21st, to add your name to the letter.

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