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Agency Estimates 1.66 Net Update for MA Plans in CY 2021 Rate Announcement; Finalizes Kidney Acquisition Cost Carve-Outs from MA Benchmarks

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the final Calendar Year (CY) 2021 Medicare Advantage and Part D Rate Announcement (fact sheet). What it is. CMS finalizes a range of policies for Medicare Advantage (MA) and Part D plans for CY 2021, originally proposed in Parts I and II of the Advance Notice. Why it is important for… (LaRosa, 4/6/20) #Medicare Advantage, #Medicare Part D, #End-Stage Renal Disease

Commission Votes on Draft Recommendations for June 2020 Report; Includes Part D Redesign, ESRD PPS, and MA QBP

On Thursday, April 2, 2020, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) convened a virtual session to vote on draft recommendations for inclusion in its forthcoming June 2020 Report to Congress. The event was closed to the public; however, meeting materials and a full transcript of the discussion are available. Before moving into the voting sessions, the Commission first began with… (LaRosa, 4/6/20) #Costs, #Medicare Advantage, #Value-Based Purchasing, #Care Coordination, #End-Stage Renal Disease, #Drug Pricing

FEMA Details Public Assistance Eligibility Requirements in New Fact Sheets

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) published a fact sheet outlining the requirements private non-profit (PNP) organizations must meet in order to be eligible to apply for funding through the Public Assistance (PA) Program. The document describes two categories of eligibility that must be met to qualify: (1) requirements for the applicant (PNP) and (2) requirements for the work being… (Testa, 4/3/20) #Public Health, #Grants, #COVID-19

Agency accepting Nominations for PCORI Board of Governors Membership

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently announced it is accepting nominations for participation on the Board of Governors of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). Current openings are a result of terms ending in September 2020. Specifically, GAO is seeking nominations for the following categories: A physician; A representative of patients and health care consumers; A representative of pharmaceutical manufacturers… (LaRosa, 4/3/20) #Hospitals, #Physicians

Blood Donor Eligibility Recommendations Revised to Increase Blood Supply During COVID-19 Pandemic

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued guidance to address the urgent need for blood during the COVID-19 pandemic (press release). This guidance revises previous recommendations regarding blood donor eligibility in order to expand access to critically needed bloody supply. The FDA notes that based on completed studies and epidemiological data, the agency has concluded that blood donor eligibility criteria… (Slifer, 4/2/20) #Food and Drug Administration, #Hospitals, #Public Health, #COVID-19

U.S. Surgeon General Details ‘Crisis Standards of Care Strategies’ in Open Letter on Optimizing Ventilator Use during the COVID-19 Pandemic

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced yesterday that it has developed “crisis standards of care strategies” to optimize ventilator use in the face of unprecedented demand on hospital and ICU resources during the COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, HHS partnered with FEMA, the U.S. Surgeon General, and the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine, as well as healthcare… (Cowey, 4/2/20) #Public Health, #COVID-19

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