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Senate Finance Committee Releases Draft Bill on Improving Chronic Care under Medicare

10/31/2016

On October 27, 2016, the bipartisan Chronic Care Working Group in the Senate Finance Committee, consisting of Senators Orin Hatch (R-Utah), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), and Mark Warner (D-Va.), released a draft of a bill titled the “Creating High-Quality Results and Outcomes Necessary to Improve Chronic (CHRONIC) Care Act of 2016.” The Chronic Care Working Group held a briefing on Capitol Hill the same morning, and staff from ASHP’s Government Relations Division attended.
 
The result of more than two years of discussions by the group, including solicitation of public comment, the CHRONIC Care Act would make a number of changes to the Medicare program to address the needs of beneficiaries with chronic conditions. ASHP provided data to the group early in its development of policies as well as detailed comments on a white paper released in December 2015. Of the 15 policies proposed in the bill, several feature areas in which pharmacists would have a positive impact on patient care. Of particular note is a study to be conducted by the Government Accountability Office (GAO). The GAO study would examine the prevalence and effectiveness of Medicare and other payer medication synchronization programs, specifically identifying the common characteristics and assessing their impact on medication adherence, patient outcome, and patient satisfaction. Additionally, the study would determine how Medicare rules support medication synchronization. ASHP is analyzing the bill and engaging with the Senate, our members, and additional stakeholders as appropriate.
 
The text of the bill can be found here.
 
A section-by-section discussion of the bill is available here.
 
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