The new rule, which updates the Quality Payment Program (QPP) in its second year, will give clinical coordinators a powerful new tool to help recruit preceptors for their students and address the clinical training site shortage.
In the coming weeks, PAEA will develop resources and tools for members to ensure that clinical coordinators can effectively highlight the value of this new incentive to potential preceptors.
The CMS decision followed a PAEA-led grassroots campaign, which saw more than 300 PA education advocates submit comments to CMS during the open comment period for the 2018 QPP proposed rule. In its comments accompanying the final rule, CMS acknowledged the crucial role of the “many comments of support for this improvement activity” from program directors, faculty, and other supporters of PA education in ensuring that PAEA’s proposal was finalized.
Although this decision by CMS is a significant step forward in addressing the clinical training site shortage, CMS elected to limit eligibility for the improvement activity to preceptors serving in “community settings in small, rural, or underserved areas.” In PAEA’s comments submitted to CMS on August 11, President William Kohlhepp wrote, “Because many of our PA clinical training sites are in hospitals or health systems, this amendment would further the goal of this improvement activity in 2018 and in later years of the QPP.” While CMS elected to not expand eligibility to hospitals and health systems this year, PAEA will continue to advocate for the expansion of eligibility to all practice sites in future rulemaking.
A big thank you goes out to our members and other advocates for your ongoing leadership and participation in this campaign. These campaigns show that our collective voice — amplified by our new Grassroots Action Network — is a powerful one in advancing the mission of PA education.