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Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request

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AGENCY:

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, HHS.

In compliance with the requirement of section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is publishing the following summary of proposed collections for public comment. Interested persons are invited to send comments regarding this burden estimate or any other aspect of this collection of information, including any of the following subjects: (1) The necessity and utility of the proposed information collection for the proper performance of the agency's functions; (2) the accuracy of the estimated burden; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology to minimize the information collection burden.

1. Type of Information Collection Request: New collection; Title of Information Collection: Generic Clearance for Medicaid and CHIP State Plan, Waiver, and Program Submissions; Use: CMS is requesting a generic PRA clearance for a body of forms necessary to conduct ongoing business with State partners in the implementation of Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The specific forms have not yet been developed but will be developed over the 3-year approval period. The types of forms to be produced in this collection include State plan amendment templates, waiver and demonstration templates, and reporting templates. The development of streamlined submission forms is critical for States to implement timely health reform initiatives in Medicaid and CHIP state plans, demonstrations, and waivers, including legislative requirements enacted by the Affordable Care Act. The development of streamlined submissions forms enhances the collaboration and partnership between States and CMS by documenting CMS policy for States to use as they are developing program changes. Streamlined forms improve efficiency of administration by creating Start Printed Page 38656a common and user-friendly understanding of the information needed by CMS to quickly process requests for State plan amendments, waivers, and demonstration, as well as ongoing reporting; Form Number: CMS-10398 (OMB # 0938-NEW); Frequency: Occasionally; Affected Public: State, Local, or Tribal Governments; Number of Respondents: 56; Total Annual Responses: 1120; Total Annual Hours: 28,747. (For policy questions regarding this collection contact Candice Payne at 410-786-4453. For all other issues call 410-786-1326.)

2. Type of Information Collection Request: New collection; Title of Information Collection: Analysis of Transportation Barriers to Utilization of Medicare Services by American Indian and Alaska Native Medicare Beneficiaries; Use: The purpose of the proposed study is to identify and analyze transportation barriers associated with the utilization of Medicare services by American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) beneficiaries, to identify and analyze the health outcomes resulting from those barriers, and ultimately to identify potential solutions that could help mitigate the problem and produce meaningful improvements in health care use and health outcomes for this population. Specifically, the information that will be collected through the use of instruments and the study developed under the Analysis of Transportation Barriers to Utilization of Medicare Services by American Indian and Alaska Native Medicare Beneficiaries Project has not been collected or evaluated previously by any agency or individual, so data on the extent of transportation barriers for rural AI/AN beneficiaries to Medicare services by AI/AN Medicare beneficiaries are not available except from the proposed data collection activity.

The information gathered as part of the project—through the use of survey, interview, and focus group instruments—will be used by CMS to identify transportation barriers to Medicare services for AI/AN Medicare beneficiaries. It will provide the first ever complete evaluation of transportation barriers to health care for this population.; Form Number: CMS-10399 (OMB # 0938-NEW); Frequency: Occasionally; Affected Public: Individuals and Households, Private Sector; Number of Respondents: 3,418; Total Annual Responses: 3,418; Total Annual Hours: 2,544. (For policy questions regarding this collection contact Roger Goodacre at 410-786-3209. For all other issues call 410-786-1326.)

3. Type of Information Collection Request: Revision of a currently approved collection; Title of Information Collection: Application for Prescription Drug Plans (PDP); Application for Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug (MA-PD); Application for Cost Plans to Offer Qualified Prescription Drug Coverage; Application for Employer Group Waiver Plans to Offer Prescription Drug Coverage; Service Area Expansion Application for Prescription Drug Coverage; Use: The Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit program was established by section 101 of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA) and is codified in section 1860D of the Social Security Act (the Act). Section 101 of the MMA amended Title XVIII of the Social Security Act by redesignating Part D as Part E and inserting a new Part D, which establishes the voluntary Prescription Drug Benefit Program (“Part D”). The MMA was amended on July 15, 2008 by the enactment of the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008 (MIPPA), on March 23, 2010 by the enactment of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and on March 30, 2010 by the enactment the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (collectively the Affordable Care Act).

Coverage for the prescription drug benefit is provided through contracted prescription drug plans (PDPs) or through Medicare Advantage (MA) plans that offer integrated prescription drug and health care coverage (MA-PD plans). Cost Plans that are regulated under Section 1876 of the Social Security Act, and Employer Group Waiver Plans (EGWP) may also provide a Part D benefit. Organizations wishing to provide services under the Prescription Drug Benefit Program must complete an application, negotiate rates, and receive final approval from CMS. Existing Part D Sponsors may also expand their contracted service area by completing the Service Area Expansion (SAE) application.

Effective January 1, 2006, the Part D program established an optional prescription drug benefit for individuals who are entitled to Medicare Part A or enrolled in Part B. In general, coverage for the prescription drug benefit is provided through PDPs that offer drug-only coverage, or through MA organizations that offer integrated prescription drug and health care coverage (MA-PD plans). PDPs must offer a basic drug benefit. Medicare Advantage Coordinated Care Plans (MA-CCPs) must offer either a basic benefit or may offer broader coverage for no additional cost. Medicare Advantage Private Fee for Service Plans (MA-PFFS) may choose to offer a Part D benefit. Cost Plans that are regulated under Section 1876 of the Social Security Act, and Employer Group Plans may also provide a Part D benefit. If any of the contracting organizations meet basic requirements, they may also offer supplemental benefits through enhanced alternative coverage for an additional premium.

Applicants may offer either a PDP or MA-PD plan with a service area covering the nation (i.e., offering a plan in every region) or covering a limited number of regions. MA-PD and Cost Plan applicants may offer local plans. There are 34 PDP regions and 26 MA regions in which PDPs or regional MA-PDs may be offered respectively. The MMA requires that each region have at least two Medicare prescription drug plans from which to choose, and at least one of those must be a PDP. Requirements for contracting with Part D Sponsors are defined in Part 423 of 42 CFR.

This clearance request is for the information collected to ensure applicant compliance with CMS requirements and to gather data used to support determination of contract awards; Form Number: CMS-10137 (OMB # 0938-0936); Frequency: Yearly; Affected Public: Privates Sector; Number of Respondents: 178; Total Annual Responses: 178; Total Annual Hours: 2,322. (For policy questions regarding this collection contact Linda Anders at 410-786-0459. For all other issues call 410-786-1326.)

4. Type of Information Collection Request: Revision of a currently approved collection; Title of Information Collection: Part C Medicare Advantage and 1876 Cost Plan Expansion Application; Use: Collection of this information is mandated in Part C of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA) in Subpart K of 42 CRF 422 entitled “Contracts with Medicare Advantage Organizations.” In addition, the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008 (MIPPA) amended titles XVII and XIX of the Social Security Act to improve the Medicare program.

In general, coverage for the prescription drug benefit is provided through prescription drug plans (PDPs) that offer drug-only coverage or through Medicare Advantage (MA) organizations that offer integrated prescription drug and health care products (MA-PD Start Printed Page 38657plans). PDPs must offer a basic drug benefit. Medicare Advantage Coordinated Care Plans (MA-CCPs) either must offer a basic benefit or may offer broader coverage for no additional cost. Medicare Advantage Private Fee for Service Plans (MA-PFFS) may choose to offer enrollees a Part D benefit. Employer Group Plans may also provide Part D benefits. If any of the contracting organizations meet basic requirements, they may also offer supplemental benefits through enhanced alternative coverage for an additional premium.

Organizations wishing to provide healthcare services under MA and/or MA-PD plans must complete an application, file a bid, and receive final approval from CMS. Existing MA plans may request to expand their contracted service area by completing the Service Area Expansion (SAE) application. Applicants may offer a local MA plan in a county, a portion of a county (i.e., a partial county) or multiple counties. Applicants may offer a MA regional plan in one or more of the 26 MA regions.

This clearance request is for the information collected to ensure applicant compliance with CMS requirements and to gather data used to support determination of contract awards. The information will be collected under the solicitation of Part C application from MA, EGWP Plan, and Cost Plan applicants. The collection information will be used by CMS to: (1) Ensure that applicants meet CMS requirements, (2) support the determination of contract awards. Participation in all Programs is voluntary in nature. Only organizations that are interested in participating in the program will respond to the solicitation. MA-PDs that voluntarily participate in the Part C program must submit a Part D application and successful bid. Form Number: CMS-10237 (OMB # 0938-0935); Frequency: Yearly; Affected Public: Private Sector; Number of Respondents: 378; Total Annual Responses: 378; Total Annual Hours: 13,296. (For policy questions regarding this collection contact Letticia Ramsey at 410-786-5262. For all other issues call 410-786-1326.)

To obtain copies of the supporting statement and any related forms for the proposed paperwork collections referenced above, access CMS' Web site at http://www.cms.gov/​PaperworkReductionActof1995/​PRAL/​list.asp#TopOfPage or e-mail your request, including your address, phone number, OMB number, and CMS document identifier, to Paperwork@cms.hhs.gov, or call the Reports Clearance Office at 410-786-1326.

In commenting on the proposed information collections, please reference the document identifier or OMB control number. To be assured consideration, comments and recommendations must be submitted in one of the following ways by August 30, 2011:

1. Electronically. You may submit your comments electronically to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for “Comment or Submission” or “More Search Options” to find the information collection document(s) accepting comments.

2. By regular mail. You may mail written comments to the following address: CMS, Office of Strategic Operations and Regulatory Affairs, Division of Regulations Development, Attention: Document Identifier/OMB Control Number, Room C4-26-05, 7500 Security Boulevard, Baltimore, Maryland 21244-1850.

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Dated: June 28, 2011.

Michelle Shortt,

Director, Regulations Development Group, Office of Strategic Operations and Regulatory Affairs.

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[FR Doc. 2011-16600 Filed 6-30-11; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4120-01-P