Congresswoman Diana DeGette

Representing the First District of Colorado
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DeGette, Kennedy and Brown Bill to Improve Data Collection for Medicaid and CHIP Programs

Jun 9, 2017
Press Release

Washington, DC Congresswoman Diana DeGette (D-CO), Congressman Joe Kennedy III (D-MA) and Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) have introduced a bill that will improve the quality of care for Americans who receive health care through Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

The Medicaid and CHIP Quality Improvement Act (MCQIA) – H.R. 2843 in the House and S. 1317 in the Senate – builds on existing adult and pediatric quality measures that were developed to gauge the health care needs of people in these programs and provide metrics for improvement. It achieves these aims by providing a framework for states to submit Medicaid and CHIP data on existing quality measures to the Department of Health and Human Services, which HHS will submit in an annual report to Congress.

To incentivize performance, an annual incentive payment will be provided to states that have the highest quality of care. To incentivize improvement, a similar payment will be made to the states that show the greatest improvements in care. This will provide Congress with the data necessary to compare programs and craft informed policy to help improve Medicaid and CHIP programs across the country.

“Enhancing data collection will help federal and state policymakers learn from best practices and innovation in different state Medicaid programs,” Congresswoman DeGette noted. “Unfortunately, data collection under Medicaid lags behind other health insurance programs. The Medicaid and CHIP Quality Improvement Act would modernize quality measurement programs, improving care for 71.5 million Medicaid and CHIP enrollees across all states and reducing unacceptable health care disparities.”

“When our most vulnerable patient populations seek health care, Medicaid and CHIP ensure access to treatment is within reach,” Congressman Kennedy said. “But unless we can guarantee the quality of that care, the promise of access means little. Even though millions of Americans rely on these programs, a troubling lack of information and data has stood in the way of efforts to replicate their strengths and address their weaknesses. This bill will not only inform the actions we take to strengthen Medicaid, it will incent states to improve the quality of care.”

“Instead of trying to take care away from thousands of Ohioans, we should be coming together to work on commonsense proposals to make care better for all those we serve,” said Senator Brown. “Everyone should be able to get behind these efforts to improve care for those who receive care through Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program.”