CMS: Changes to prior authorization coming this year

CMS will prioritize prior authorization this year in its efforts to reduce administrative burden and improve healthcare innovation.

At the American Medical Association National Advocacy Conference in Washington, D.C., Feb. 11, CMS Administrator Seema Verma said she acknowledged frustrations, both from patients and physicians, around the prior authorization process. She tied the process, which insurers argue is needed to shield patients from harmful and unnecessary treatment, to care delays and physician burnout.

Ms. Verma said looking at ways to automate prior authorization is a "priority" for CMS. The agency has conducted 35 listening sessions and has more than 2,000 stakeholder comments on prior authorization.

While Ms. Verma didn't go into the details of any changes, she told attendees: "The Trump administration is once again ready to take action to support doctors and patients. We will reduce administrative waste, increase patient safety, and free physicians to spend time caring for their patients."

Read the full speech here.

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