The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services ("CMS") announced today the creation of its Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (the "Innovation Center"). The Innovation Center was established in the health care reform law, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. CMS explains that the purpose of the Innovation Center is "to explore new approaches to the way we pay for and deliver care to patients so that we have better results both in terms of the quality of care and the affordability of coverage." At first, the Innovation Center will focus on the following three key areas: (1) improving care for patients, making it more efficient, effective and safer; (2) developing new models of care to ensure health care providers work together to coordinate care for patients; and (3) fighting public health problems such as obesity and smoking at the community level.
CMS has also unveiled a website in conjunction with the Innovation Center. CMS describes the website as not only a way to obtain information from CMS about various innovative approaches to health care, but also as a way in which people from a variety of backgrounds can share their knowledge with one another. At the moment, the website contains little information, but we expect it will expand considerably over the coming months. For a link to the Innovation Center's blog, click here.