The Affordable Care Act (ACA) reauthorized funding for numerous existing discretionary programs and created multiple new discretionary grant programs and provided for each an authorization of appropriations. Funding for all these discretionary programs is subject to action by congressional appropriators. A new report published by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) summarizes all the discretionary spending provisions in ACA.
The ACA permanently reauthorized the federal health centers program and the National Health Service Corps (NHSC), which provides scholarships and student loan repayments to individuals who agree to a period of service as a primary care provider in a federally designated Health Professional Shortage Area. The ACA also reauthorized and expanded existing health workforce education and training programs under Titles VII and VIII of the Public Health Service Act (PHSA). In addition, the Act created several new programs to increase training experiences in primary care, in rural areas, and in community-based settings, and provided training opportunities to increase the supply of pediatric subspecialists and geriatricians. It also expanded nursing workforce development programs.
The ACA authorized several new grant programs with a focus on preventable or modifiable risk factors for disease (e.g., sedentary lifestyle, tobacco use) and leveraged mechanisms to improve the quality of health care, develop and disseminate innovative strategies for improving the quality of health care delivery, and support for care coordination programs.
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated that ACA’s discretionary spending provisions, if fully funded, would result in appropriations of approximately $100 billion by 2021.
October 11, 2012
Today the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced
$229.4 million invested in the National Health Service Corps. The investment will finance nearly 4,600 loan repayment and scholarship awards to clinicians and students, and grants to 32 states to support state loan repayment programs. The mission of the National Health Service Corps is to provide financial, professional, and educational support to medical, dental, and mental and behavioral health providers who will serve patient populations with limited access to quality health care. Since its establishment in 1970, the National Health Service Corps, has provided care to communities by supporting over 42,000 primary care providers.
August 22, 2012
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Innovation Center announced
today the 500 practices in seven regions that will participate in its Comprehensive Primary Care Initiative. According to the CMS website
, "the Comprehensive Primary Care (CPC) initiative is a multi-payer initiative fostering collaboration between public and private health care payers to strengthen primary care. Medicare will work with commercial and State health insurance plans and offer bonus payments to primary care doctors who better coordinate care for their patients. Primary care practices that choose to participate in this initiative will be given resources to better coordinate primary care for their Medicare patients." The 500 primary care practices participating in the CPC initiative will represent 2,144 providers serving an estimated 313,000 Medicare beneficiaries.
October 24, 2011
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced
today that 500 Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) have been selected to participate in the Advanced Primary Care Practice demonstration project. These 500 centers will receive $42 million over three years to improve quality and coordination of health care delivery. The project is designed to evaluate the patient-centered medical home model. The goal of the model is to improve patient health and the quality of health care delivery while lowering the cost of of care. HRSA and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation Center developed the demonstration, which will be conducted from November 1, 2011 through October 31, 2014.
November 22, 2010
Today, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced
$290 million in new funding from the Affordable Care Act (ACA) for the National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Loan Repayment Program to help increase the number of primary care providers in medically underserved areas. These funds will allow $60,000 in loan debt forgiveness to medical, dental, and mental health primary care providers who commit to practicing 2 years in an NHSC-designated service area. Additionally, the ACA allows for more leeway in administering NHSC funds, such as the opportunity to work full-time or half-time, as well as total loan forgiveness for a commitment of six years.
June 28, 2010
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has issued a proposed rule to provide preventive services to Medicare beneficiaries and boost payment to primary care providers.
June 16, 2010
The Department of Health and Human Services has announced $250 million in investments to develop the primary care workforce under the Prevention and Public Health Fund created by the health reform law. The Obama Administration also posted a fact sheet at HealthReform.gov outlining how this funding fits into efforts designed to expand capacity and bring providers to medically underserved communities.
May 30, 2012
Low physician participation rates in Medicaid -- virtually since the program’s 1965 enactment -- have long posed a key limitation to its effectiveness. Many factors are thought to account for limited physician participation but, historically, low payment rates have stood out as a primary underlying problem. As of 2008, Medicaid physician fees stood at approximately 72 percent of Medicare fees...
March 16, 2011
Strengthening and modernizing the health care workforce was a major goal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). The ACA contains dozens of provisions related to health care workforce issues, including strengthening primary care, national workforce policy development, increasing the supply of health care workers, and more. This Implementation Brief focuses on those provisions of the ACA that specifically target the strengthening of the primary care physician workforce.