BLOG — Top 5 Things Washington Can Do in 2022 to Improve Health Care Affordability
The most effective, long-term way to make health care more affordable is to pay for health care differently: prioritize appropriate, high-value care and interventions, including prevention, primary care, and identifying and addressing the social determinants of health. When we pay for care this way, patient outcomes improve and costs go down.And when payers and providers work together, coordinating care and aligning payment incentives, value across the system improves even further. As we drive toward a value-based health care system, here are five things Washington can do in the new year to ensure affordable, high-quality coverage and care for all.
The Medicare Advantage program is in the spotlight – for good reason. CBO projects that a majority of eligible seniors will be enrolled in MA by 2023 and will reach 60% in next decade. Considering its popularity among a diverse group of seniors, now is the time to take it to the next level.
Allow health plans to account for audio-only encounters in risk adjustment during the pandemic to ensure patient acuity is accurately and appropriately documented and the needs of these patients continue to be met.
Raise the bar on quality to include more accurate health outcome metrics that help better meet the needs of seniors choosing MA.
2. Commit to telehealth, making permanent telehealth flexibilities afforded under the PHE
Americans safely and conveniently accessed telehealth in record numbers in 2020 and 2021, clearly indicating that this method of care delivery is here to stay.
Congress can move Cures 2.0 and make permanent current telehealth flexibilities – specifically removing geographic restrictions – and prioritize a consistent telehealth experience across all federal programs.
The Administration can incent value-based benefit design that supports telehealth.
ACHP is the voice of a unique approach in health care today, one that puts the patient at the center with plans and clinical teams collaborating to improve health outcomes and reduce costs. Our advocacy focuses on providing policymakers with tested solutions, rooted in a model that is proven to deliver better value for patients, employers and taxpayers.