CMMI: Nice Work, Maryland. Do More.

October 25, 2021
On Thursday, several hospital leaders joined state officials and others from across the Maryland health care field to meet with Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) Director Elizabeth Fowler and her team to hear their views of the Maryland Total Cost of Care Model.

Fowler first pointed to a new white paper entitled “Innovation Center Strategy Refresh.” Notably, CMMI will cull demonstrations that are too narrow in scope and don’t accelerate the move from fee-for-service payment to value-based care. The paper reveals that, of 50 projects CMMI has launched since 2010, just six – ours included – have netted Medicare savings.

Fowler said CMMI appreciates that our Model delivers value in cost, quality, and care transformation. She itemized benefits: beneficiaries have care relationships with meaningful accountability; growing emphasis on population health, with a focus on equity; safety net providers are engaged; the Maryland Primary Care Program has scaled up nicely; and continuing innovation with Care Transformation Initiatives and EQIP, the Episode Quality Improvement Program.

CMMI expectations for the future include more cost savings by growing Medicare spending at less than the national rate; more care transformation through better alignment with providers beyond hospitals; and, more investment in community interventions targeted to behavioral health needs and social determinants of health.

The hospital leaders and I spoke of our dedication to these same aims and described the serious and impactful work you are doing to improve health and advance care while boosting efficiency. This includes upstream investments to prevent people from ever needing acute care.

Navigating the way forward won’t be easy, though. MHA is relying on you, our members, to keep up the good fight and to brainstorm how best to reach the next level of achievement.

Bob Atlas
President & CEO 
  • 2021
  • Blog