C-TAC Applauds Landmark 2016 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) Proposed Rule on Advance Care Planning
Washington, D.C.—Today, CMS released its proposed rule for the 2016 physician fee schedule that included two CPT codes for advance care planning: 99497 and 99498. We commend the Administration for including and funding codes that would help physicians and other qualified health care professionals conduct in-depth conversations with patients regarding their care goals and treatment preferences. The adoption of these codes is an important first step in ensuring that all individuals — especially those experiencing serious or advanced illness — receive care that aligns with their wishes and preferences and honors their dignity.
As the Baby Boomer population continues to age and our population grows older, it is critical to ensure that individuals have the opportunity to engage in voluntary advance care planning discussions with their clinician and that providers are properly reimbursed for their services. Doing so is crucial to supporting an approach to care delivery that is high-quality, comprehensive, and person-centered.
Numerous peer-reviewed studies and research demonstrate the value of advance care planning in increasing patient and family satisfaction, lowering unwanted hospitalization rates, and reducing caregiver burden and distress. Yet, according to a recent study published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, only 26.3% of respondents out of 7,946 survey participants had completed an advance directive between the years 2009-2010.
We look forward to working closely with the Administration and stakeholders across the landscape in order to support individuals with advanced illness and ensure that their goals, values, and preferences are fully honored.