The House Energy and Commerce Committee today held the second in a series of hearings on implementation of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015, with a focus on physician efforts to prepare for the Medicare payment reforms. Jeffrey Bailet, M.D., executive vice president of Milwaukee-based Aurora Health Care and co-president of Aurora Health Care Medical Group, shared how the integrated health care delivery system is working to implement value-based reforms through initiatives such as AboutHealth, a strategic partnership with other health care systems in the region to advance clinical quality, efficiency and the patient experience. When implementing the regulations for MACRA’s payment systems, he said the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services “should recognize that the health care system will need time to adapt and learn how to function in this new payment environment. Providing an incremental approach that includes flexibility and rational exposure to financial risk will be vital in ensuring a successful transition to value-based payment.” Bailet also highlighted Aurora’s efforts to expand and improve their hospital outpatient departments and encouraged Congress to move swiftly to reduce the uncertainty created by the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 regarding Medicare reimbursement policies for HOPDs that are currently under development, “which only creates disincentive for these facilities to participate in any risk-based alternative payment models where they face further financial downside.” Bailet chairs the Physician-Focused Payment Model Technical Advisory Committee, created by MACRA to advise the Secretary of Health and Human Services on new value-based payment models. Also testifying at the hearing were representatives from the American Medical Association, American College of Physicians, and American Academy of Family Physicians. For more on the coming changes to the Medicare physician payment system, visit www.aha.org/MACRA.