Today, the FAH submitted comments to the Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health and Human Services in response to the OIG’s annual solicitation of new safe harbors under the Medicare anti-kickback statute. The FAH urged the OIG to create a new safe harbor for incentive payments between hospitals and other providers when operating within the confines of a qualified alternative payment model (APM), as designated by CMS.
The FAH noted that APMs often emphasize bundled payments and/or value-based payments, with a focus on alignment strategies among hospitals, physicians, and other providers to achieve higher quality and lower total expenditures for Medicare beneficiaries. Yet, APMs are materially hindered by the existing Medicare anti-kickback statute, which is designed to require strict financial separation between providers who are in a position to refer to one another. The FAH therefore urged the OIG to develop a new safe harbor for APM incentive payments that would provide hospitals, physicians, and other providers the confidence necessary to move forward with meaningful economic and clinical alignment strategies that further quality, reduce waste, and improve patient outcomes.
The complete letter can be found here.