American Osteopathic Association

Advancing the distinctive philosophy and practice of osteopathic medicine

Proposed MACRA Rule Addresses Multiple Physician Concerns, Moves System Toward Quality Outcomes

Problems Addressed with Meaningful Use, Duplicative Quality Reporting Cited as Victories by American Osteopathic Association

Washington, April 28, 2016—The American Osteopathic Association today praised the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) for correcting several pain points created by earlier attempts to move the health care system away from fee-for-service payment models. The proposed MACRA rule was announced late Wednesday.

The improvements include elimination of the “pass/fail” standard for the meaningful use of electronic health records, as well as consolidation of redundant quality reporting standards, long criticized by physicians as “checkbox medicine.”

“As an organization, we focused on ensuring osteopathic physicians’ issues were addressed by the administration as it worked to develop this new system and we are extremely gratified to see that our voices had an impact,” said John W. Becher, DO, president of the American Osteopathic Association. “These changes respect the kind of quality care osteopathic physicians provide to their patients and give DOs flexibility to pick the payment system and quality measures that actually reflect how they practice.”

While overall the proposed MACRA rule benefits most physicians, there are concerns about its treatment of patient-centered medical homes. AOA was an early advocate for this model of care and strongly supports them as a driver of high quality, lower cost outcomes for patients. However, the rule’s failure to recognize any existing patient-centered medical homes under the alternative payment model system is confounding, Dr. Becher said.

“Congress took great care in considering the advantages of patient-centered medical homes and we are disappointed that the administration has created confusion and uncertainty for the early adopters of this wildly successful model of care,” Dr. Becher added. “We look forward to working with the agency to improve that aspect and will be submitting constructive feedback.”

The AOA remains optimistic because the administration is demonstrating true engagement in this important dialogue with physicians, mirroring the congressional process for drafting MACRA.

About the American Osteopathic Association

The American Osteopathic Association (AOA) represents more than 123,000 osteopathic physicians (DOs) and osteopathic medical students; promotes public health; encourages scientific research; serves as the primary certifying body for DOs; and is the accrediting agency for osteopathic medical schools. More information on DOs/osteopathic medicine can be found at


Media Contact:   
Sheridan Chaney
(312) 202-8043 (Office)

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