AGs From 37 States Call for Better Insurance Coverage for Nonopioid Pain Treatment

Attorneys general (AGs) from 37 states have let the insurance industry know that the fight against the nation’s opioid crisis won’t be won unless health care providers are encouraged to prioritize nonopioid pain management options, including physical therapy, over opioid prescriptions for the treatment of chronic, noncancer pain. But that encouragement won’t have much impact unless it’s accompanied by payment coverage policies that make the nonopioid approaches more feasible to pursue, they write.

In a letter to America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), the health insurance industry’s trade association, AGs affiliated with the National Association of Attorneys General describe the opioid crisis as “the preeminent public health crisis of our time.” The AGs say that while addressing addiction and recovery are crucial components in solving the problem, the issue must also be addressed further upstream—namely in the ways opioids are overused as a treatment for pain.

Full story at APTA

AGs From 37 States Call for Better Insurance Coverage for Nonopioid Pain Treatment

Attorneys general (AGs) from 37 states have let the insurance industry know that the fight against the nation’s opioid crisis won’t be won unless health care providers are encouraged to prioritize nonopioid pain management options, including physical therapy, over opioid prescriptions for the treatment of chronic, noncancer pain. But that encouragement won’t have much impact unless it’s accompanied by payment coverage policies that make the nonopioid approaches more feasible to pursue, they write.

In a letter to America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), the health insurance industry’s trade association, AGs affiliated with the National Association of Attorneys General describe the opioid crisis as “the preeminent public health crisis of our time.” The AGs say that while addressing addiction and recovery are crucial components in solving the problem, the issue must also be addressed further upstream—namely in the ways opioids are overused as a treatment for pain.

Full story at APTA

CMS, Private Insurers Agree on Health Care Outcome Measures

Everyone agrees that the future of health care will be driven by outcomes. But which outcomes will be doing the driving? A major-player collaborative that includes the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the country’s leading private insurers’ organization has unveiled its first answers to that question.

In mid-February, the Core Quality Measures Collaborative released its first-ever consensus document to “identify core sets of quality measures that payers have committed to using for reporting as soon as feasible,” according to CMS, which joined with America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), purchasers, consumers, and physician and other care provider organizations to develop lists of standard outcome measures in 7 clinical areas. Besides CMS and AHIP, participants included the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Family Physicians.

The inaugural 7 areas addressed by the measures are cardiology; gastroenterology; HIV and hepatitis C; medical oncology; obstetrics and gynecology; orthopedics; and accountable care organizations (ACOs), patient centered medical homes (PCMHs), and primary care. According to AHIP, these will be the first in a series of “broadly agreed upon core measure sets that are aligned and harmonized across public and private payers.”

Full story of CMS and Private Insurers on health care outcomes measures at APTA