AMGA Recommends Changes to CMS Hospital Conditions of Participation to Improve Interoperability

Alexandria, VA—AMGA recommended in comments yesterday to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) that the agency modify Conditions of Participation (CoPs) for hospitals in order to improve interoperability of the exchange of electronic health information. The trade association stated that in order to more effectively deliver value-based care, medical groups and health systems must have timely access to patient care information.

“Improving interoperability will give medical groups the ability to transform the quality of care delivered to patients,” said  Jerry Penso, M.D., M.B.A., AMGA president and chief executive officer. “By allowing care providers more real-time access to electronic patient information, CMS can help us achieve a far more interoperable system that will foster care coordination and improve patient engagement.”

AMGA was responding to a April 24 Request for Information (RFI) issued by CMS on how revisions to the agency’s CoPs for hospitals and/or Conditions for Coverage (CfCs) and Requirements for Long-Term Care Facilities can promote interoperability and electronic sharing of patient information. AMGA stressed the necessity for providers to quickly communicate patient data and suggested that CMS require hospitals to electronically share information with providers in real time when their patients arrive in the hospital’s emergency departments, are admitted or discharged from the hospital, or are transferred to another in-patient facility via admission, discharge, and transfer (ADT) alerts. In addition, AMGA asserted that certain information, such as discharge instructions and summary of care, should be electronically available to patients within 24 hours.

The RFI acknowledges there are significant obstacles to exchanging health information across the continuum of care. AMGA also is sensitive to the requirements and costs associated with such an endeavor, and recommends that CMS allow hospitals the time to develop the necessary infrastructure to phase-in ADT notifications and other electronic information for their patients.

Above all, any revisions made to CoPs or other requirements should align with the Quality Payment Program and the development of the Trusted Exchange Framework and Common Agreement (TEFCA).

The letter is available here on the AMGA website.

About AMGA
AMGA is a trade association leading the transformation of health care in America. Representing multispecialty medical groups and integrated systems of care, we advocate, educate, innovate, and empower our members to deliver the next level of high performance health. AMGA is the national voice promoting awareness of our members’ recognized excellence in the delivery of coordinated, high-quality, high-value care. More than 175,000 physicians practice in our member organizations, delivering care to one in three Americans.


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