Regulatory Advocacy

The AAO-HNS has a long history of working closely with regulatory agencies (e.g., Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, U.S. Food and Drug Administration) to maintain our visibility and credibility with national representatives regarding federal regulatory issues.

We believe that advocacy is the key to defining the future of otolaryngology. Federal regulatory advocacy is a top priority of the AAO-HNS.

Academy Comments on CY 2017 HOPPS Final Rule
On December 22, the Academy submitted comments to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on the final rule for 2017 Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System (HOPPS) and Ambulatory Surgical Center Payment Rate. In the comments, the Academy addressed point-of-care imaging access for patients and changes to Ambulatory Payment Classifications assignments. Read the comments.

Academy Comments on MIPS and APM Final Rule
On December 19, the Academy submitted comments to CMS in response to the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and Alternative Payment Model (APM) Final Rule. The Academy commented on the reduced reporting requirements for the transition year; MIPS performance category criteria and scoring; Qualified Clinical Data Registry (QCDR) and quality measure reporting requirements; and applicability of APMs to Otolaryngologists - Head and Neck Surgeons. Access the comments

Final 2017 Medicare Fee Schedule
On November 2, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the 2017 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule final rule, which included key provisions relating to the collection and analysis of data for global surgical services. 

In response to intense advocacy from the AAO-HNS and others in the Surgical Coalition, the final rule drastically reduces the expected reporting burden for surgeons by limiting the number of codes that require reporting, delaying the start date, designating only certain states for reporting, and excluding small practices.

After a multifaceted regulatory and legislative advocacy campaign, the changes represent a substantial "win" for the surgical community. Learn more

In addition to provisions regarding data for global surgical services, the rule includes finalized proposals for practice expense adjustments and Appropriate Use Criteria for Advanced Diagnostic Imaging requirements. The Academy has evaluated the final rule and will submit comments to CMS later this week.