The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) last week submitted its June report to Congress, which includes recommendations for reforming Medicare’s benefit design and improving care for beneficiaries enrolled in both Medicare and Medicaid. The proposed Medicare benefit design would include an out-of-pocket maximum, deductible(s) for Parts A and B, and copayments (instead of coinsurance) that may vary by type of service and provider.
With respect to dual-eligible beneficiaries, MedPAC raises concerns about a Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation demonstration project that will test financial models for states to better align financing and integrate primary, acute, behavioral health and long-term care services for dual Medicare and Medicaid enrollees, including whether the initiative is in effect a program change rather than a demonstration. The report also includes two congressionally mandated reports concerning Medicare rural areas and home infusion therapy. Required by the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act,” the rural report evaluates health care access, quality, payment adequacy and special payments. Rather than specific recommendations, the report includes a set of principles to guide expectations and policies with respect to these rural issues. For more information, visithttp://www.medpac.gov/documents/Jun12_EntireReport.pdf.