CMS Launches Medicaid Innovation Accelerator Program (IAP)
Building on the work of the National Governor's Association's (NGA) Health Care Sustainability Task Force and the National Association of Medicaid Directors (NAMD), the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) this week announced a new technical assistance initiative - the Medicaid Innovation Accelerator Program (IAP), under which the agency intends to collaborate with states to deploy innovative delivery and payment system reforms to improve the quality and reduce the cost of care provided to Medicaid beneficiaries.
Under the IAP, CMS plans to invest more than $100 million to complement states' related efforts. CMS intends to initially focus IAP technical assistance efforts to assist states via the development of resources pertaining to four key functions:
- Identification and advancement of new models;
- Data analytics;
- Improved quality measurement; and
- State-to-state learning, rapid-cycle improvement, and federal evaluation.
CMS further clarifies in the accompanying FAQs that "…the IAP is not a formal grant program for states," and thus "there is no specific limit on the number of states that can benefit from the IAP or the new resources it makes available to states; rather, IAP resources will be deployed in the function areas discussed above and in targeted Medicaid program priority areas" - for example, prevalence of substance abuse disorder as per the agency's informational bulletin on Medication Assisted Treatment issued last Friday.
CMS is now exploring holding several meetings across the country in late summer to brief stakeholders and get input on the new program. In the meantime, the agency is soliciting initial and ongoing feedback and suggestions from states and other stakeholders via a dedicated CMS mailbox: MedicaidIAP@cms.hhs.gov.