Blog

HMA Telehealth Series: Telepsychiatry and the Psychiatric Workforce Shortage

This week, HMA principal Lori Raney, MD, provides an overview of telepsychiatry, a type of telemedicine where general psychiatric services are provided via videoconferencing, and how it can play a role in addressing the nationwide psychiatric workforce shortage. Dr. Raney highlights the opportunities for telepsychiatry in the market today, as well as identifies several of the obstacles to telepsychiatry implementation.

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Washington 1115 Demonstration Waiver Approved by CMS

This week, we reviewed the agreement-in-principle between the State of Washington Health Care Authority (HCA) and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on a new section 1115 demonstration waiver, which will further the state’s Healthier Washington initiative across three major dimensions. The agreement will provide up to $1.5 billion in federal funding for delivery system reform incentives, expanded options for long-term services and supports, and supportive housing and employment. HCA and CMS hope to finalize the special terms and conditions of the waiver in the coming months.

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Vermont Publicizes Draft All-Payer Model Waiver

This week, we reviewed the draft waiver agreement between the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Governor of Vermont, the Green Mountain Care Board (GMCB), and the Vermont Agency of Human Services (AHS) to form an all-payer accountable care organization (ACO) model in Vermont. The agreement, if approved by all parties, would implement ACO assignment targets, outcomes and quality milestones, and would require Vermont to keep all-payer and Medicare-specific total cost of care growth per beneficiary below annual growth rate thresholds. The all-payer model (APM) encourages alignment across Medicare, Medicaid, and commercial payers, moving toward next generation ACO models with all-inclusive population-based payments. Vermont and CMS have reached preliminary agreement on the draft waiver, with state and federal officials conducting further review at this time.

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