June 21, 2024
Payers | Tea Leaves
  • Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee sharply criticized the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) during a recent hearing on value-based care, accusing it of failing to achieve cost savings since its inception in 2010. They proposed measures such as cutting funding or even shutting down CMMI due to its reported $5.4 billion net increase in federal spending over its first decade, despite expectations it would save $80 billion. Elizabeth Fowler, deputy administrator of CMMI, defended the center’s initiatives, emphasizing their role in advancing health care transformation and quality improvement, even as they work through challenges in generating financial savings. Democrats highlighted successes like the reduction in Medicare costs and hospitalizations under certain CMMI models, contrasting sharply with Republican skepticism over its financial efficacy and operational approach. (Article here)
  • A recent Congressional Budget Office report highlights the potential cost savings of expanding hepatitis C treatments among Medicaid enrollees. Doubling the treatment rate from 5 percent to 10 percent over five years could save approximately $7 billion in health care costs over a decade. Hepatitis C infections are a significant burden, with untreated complications proving far more expensive than early antiviral treatments. The report underscores the financial benefits of proactive treatment strategies, despite the increased costs associated with testing and treatment expansion. The findings suggest that investing in broader treatment coverage could yield substantial savings while improving health outcomes and reducing long-term health care expenditures across various safety net programs. (Article here)