Top 5 Takeaways from the 2020 CMS Quality Conference

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) hosted the 2020 Quality Conference from February 25-27, 2019. During this annual quality-palooza, over 3,000 stakeholders met in Baltimore, Maryland, to discuss health care quality improvement initiatives across the country and to learn about the agency’s quality agenda.

Key takeaways from the meeting include:

  • Electronic clinical quality measures (eCQMs) by 2030: CMS is proposing a transition to eCQMs across all agency quality initiatives by 2030. CMS is interested in stakeholder feedback as to whether this is a reasonable deadline, what should the eCQMs look like and potential challenges to meeting this goal.
  • Meaningful Measures 2.0 is coming: Launched in 2017, the purpose of the Meaningful Measures initiative is to reduce the reporting burden and costs of quality reporting on clinicians. CMS is proposing to launch a Meaningful Measures 2.0 initiative with an increased emphasis on the voice of the patient in the design of quality related initiatives.
  • Reductions in the number of quality measures will continue: Under the original Meaningful Measures initiative, CMS reduced the number measures across all quality programs. There was a focus on advancing outcome measures and reducing process measures. CMS indicates that they plan on continuing this trend in 2020.
  • Kidneys! Kidneys! Kidneys!: In 2019, the Administration advanced a number of kidney-related efforts, including a Presidential Order on Kidney Care, the announcement of a mandatory kidney model and four voluntary models. There were a significant number of sessions on kidney-related quality and payment innovation related efforts at this recent conference. McDermottPlus expects this focus on kidney care issues to continue in 2020.
  • Accrediting organizations under scrutiny in 2020: During a plenary session, Administrator Seema Verma announced that the agency was increasing its scrutiny on accrediting organizations. CMS is particularly interested in accrediting groups that offer fee-based consulting services to institutions they are accrediting, which CMS characterized as a conflict of interest.

More information on the 2020 CMS Quality Conference is available here.



For more information visit the McDermottPlus Payment Innovation Resource Center or contact Sheila Madhani at 202-204-1459 or