As the deadline for submission of April 2015 applications for the Bundled Payment for Care Improvement (BPCI) initiative looms, many applicants are trying to figure out the best approach to selecting risk tracks for various episodes. Some participants are looking for "algorithms" that can assist them in selecting the most appropriate risk track, while others are noting that risk track can be changed throughout the participation period, and may wish to switch risk tracks based on their performance during a previous quarter.
Initially some BPCI participants were intrigued with the idea of participating in limited, procedurally-based episodes such as percutaneous coronary interventions (PCI) episodes in the Medicare Bundled Payment for Care Improvement program.
We've frequently commented on the need for up-to-date skills and computer hardware and software to be able to analyze the data that accompanies participation in capitated and bundled payment programs. This HIMSS article highlights some of those issues and the barriers that they present to successful participation.
Jonathan Pearce, CPA, FHFMA and Coleen Kivlahan, MD, MSPH
Many participants in “Phase I” of the Medicare Bundled Payment for Care Improvement (BPCI) program were surprised by their first look at the impact of CMMI’s BPCI precedence rules when comparing two sets of baseline data recently provided by CMS. This data show the number of episodes and target prices for episodes under two scenarios:
by Jonathan Pearce, CPA, FHFMA and Coleen Kivlahan, MD, MSPH
Applicants to the Medicare Bundled Payment for Care Improvement (BPCI) program will be busy spending December identifying episodes for which they should participate when they "go live" in April. Several episode families are common candidates for participation, and an overview of their characteristics is described below.
A new proposal for a permanent, voluntary Medicare bundled payment program was included in the discussion draft of a bill in the House Ways and Means committee. This proposal is similar to the current BPCI program, and has the following characteristics:
Achieving success in the Medicare Bundled Medicare Bundled Payment for Care Improvement initiative requires analyzing historical data to identify the opportunities and risks associated in each of the episode families, as well as the other decision points in BPCI participation. Careful evaluation of opportunities and risks before making participation decisions can pay off significantly when the at-risk period begins.
Most BPCI participants will undergo their first BPCI reconciliation in October, which will cover the first quarter of 2014. We’ve heard that some participants appear to be basing their ongoing participation in the BPCI program on these results. If a surplus occurs, they’ll stay in the program and may even add additional episode families. But if the results are negative, they’ll be jumping ship faster than the captain of the Costa Concordia.