On August 23, 2011, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement Initiative (“Initiative”). Developed by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, the Initiative is designed to give providers “new incentives to coordinate care, improve the quality of care and save money for Medicare.” For providers participating in the Initiative, Medicare will bundle payments for a package of services provided during an episode of care instead of paying separately for each individual service provided. Four different models of bundled care are available. Providers can apply to participate in the program and will be able to choose which episodes of care and services will be bundled together. To apply, providers must submit a Letter of Intent by September 22, 2011 or November 4, 2011 and a completed application by October 21, 2011 or March 15, 2012, depending on which model of the Initiative they choose.
For more information please go to http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2011pres/08/20110823a.html and http://www.innovations.cms.gov/areas-of-focus/patient-care-models/bundled-payments-for-care-improvement.html#.