A new set of Medicare rules put into effect on January 1, 2017 will help to more adequately pay physicians for the time-consuming work of managing chronic healthcare needs among older patients. Under these new rules, physicians will be paid for the legwork associated with working in healthcare teams to improve care for older adults with hypertension, diabetes, heart failure, and similar serious health issues.
Care coordination for “high need” patients will be rewarded with this new standard. Physicians will also be rewarded for ensuring that seniors receive adequate treatment for anxiety and depression. These policies all reflect increased attention to some of the costliest patients within the healthcare system.
These findings were published in Kaiser Health News on December 22, 2016.