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HHS Announces Initial Core Set of Quality Measures for Medicaid-Eligible Adults

January 6, 2012—The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Dec. 30, 2011, released the initial core set of 26 quality measures for adults enrolled in the Medicaid program. HHS and the states will use these measures to support a national system for assessing and improving care for this population.  The Affordable Care Act (ACA, P.L. 111-148 and P.L. 111-152) mandates that HHS finalize this measure set by Jan. 1, 2012.

HHS had previously released an initial set of 51 quality measures for public comment on Dec. 30, 2010. The AAMC commented on this initial measure set and recommended that the number of measures be reduced and aligned with other reporting programs [see Washington Highlights, March 4, 2011]. These measures will be used on a voluntary basis by state Medicaid agencies, health insurers, and health care providers.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will continue to phase in aspects of the Medicaid Adult Quality Measures Program over the next year. By September 2012, CMS will issue the technical specifications to States for collecting and reporting these measures. By January 2013, CMS will release guidance for submitting this initial core measure set in a standardized format. The voluntary reporting of these measures will not start until December 2013. More information on the core measure is available in the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)’s background report.


Scott Wetzel, M.P.P.
Lead, Quality Reporting
Telephone: 202-828-0495


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Washington Highlights, a weekly electronic newsletter, features brief updates on the latest legislative and regulatory activities affecting medical schools and teaching hospitals.

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Jason Kleinman
Senior Legislative Analyst, Govt. Relations
Telephone: 202-903-0806