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Notice

Request for Nominations and Announcement of the Advisory Panel on Outreach and Education (APOE) May 26, 2021 Virtual Meeting

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AGENCY:

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Health and Human Services (HHS).

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

This notice invites all interested parties to submit nominations to fill vacancies on the Advisory Panel on Outreach and Education (APOE). This notice also announces the next meeting of the APOE (the Panel) in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act. The Panel advises and makes recommendations to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) (the Secretary) and the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on opportunities to enhance the effectiveness of consumer education strategies concerning the Health Insurance Marketplace®, Medicare, Medicaid, and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). This meeting is open to the public.

DATES:

Meeting Date: Wednesday, May 26, 2021 from 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. eastern daylight time (e.d.t).

Deadline for Meeting Registration, Presentations, Special Accommodations, and Comments: Wednesday, May 19, 2021, 5:00 p.m. (e.d.t).

Deadline for Submitting Nominations: Nominations will be considered if we receive them at the appropriate address, Start Printed Page 26040provided in the ADDRESSES section of this notice, no later than 5 p.m., (e.d.t.) on June 11, 2021.

ADDRESSES:

Meeting Location: Virtual. All those who RSVP will receive the link to attend.

Nominations, Presentations, and Written Comments: Nominations, presentations, and written comments should be submitted to: Lisa Carr, Designated Federal Official (DFO), Office of Communications, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, 200 Independence Avenue SW, Mailstop 325G HHH, Washington, DC 20201, 202-690-5742, or via email at APOE@cms.hhs.gov.

Registration: The meeting is open to the public, but attendance is limited to the space available. Persons wishing to attend this meeting must register at the website https://www.eventbrite.com/​e/​apoe-may-26-2021-virtual-meeting-tickets-150209828641 or by contacting the DFO listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this notice, by the date listed in the DATES section of this notice. Individuals requiring sign language interpretation or other special accommodations should contact the DFO at the address listed in the ADDRESSES section of this notice by the date listed in the DATES section of this notice.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Lisa Carr, Designated Federal Official, Office of Communications, 200 Independence Avenue SW, Mailstop 325G HHH, Washington, DC 20201, 202-690-5742, or via email at APOE@cms.hhs.gov.

Additional information about the APOE is available at: https://www.cms.gov/​Regulations-and-Guidance/​Guidance/​FACA/​APOE. Press inquiries are handled through the CMS Press Office at (202) 690-6145.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background and Charter Renewal Information

A. Background

The Advisory Panel for Outreach and Education (APOE) (the Panel) is governed by the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) (Pub. L. 92-463), as amended (5 U.S.C. Appendix 2), which sets forth standards for the formation and use of federal advisory committees. The Panel is authorized by section 1114(f) of the Social Security Act (the Act) (42 U.S.C. 1314(f)) and section 222 of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 217a).

The Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) (the Secretary) signed the charter establishing the Citizen's Advisory Panel on Medicare Education [1] (the predecessor to the APOE) on January 21, 1999 (64 FR 7899) to advise and make recommendations to the Secretary and the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on the effective implementation of national Medicare education programs, including with respect to the Medicare+Choice (M+C) program added by the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 (Pub. L. 105-33).

The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA) (Pub. L. 108-173) expanded the existing health plan options and benefits available under the M+C program and renamed it the Medicare Advantage (MA) program. CMS has had substantial responsibilities to provide information to Medicare beneficiaries about the range of health plan options available and better tools to evaluate these options. Successful MA program implementation required CMS to consider the views and policy input from a variety of private sector constituents and to develop a broad range of public-private partnerships.

In addition, Title I of the MMA authorized the Secretary and the Administrator of CMS (by delegation) to establish the Medicare prescription drug benefit. The drug benefit allows beneficiaries to obtain qualified prescription drug coverage. In order to effectively administer the MA program and the Medicare prescription drug benefit, we have substantial responsibilities to provide information to Medicare beneficiaries about the range of health plan options and benefits available, and to develop better tools to evaluate these plans and benefits.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Pub. L. 111-148) and Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (Pub. L. 111-152) (collectively referred to as the Affordable Care Act) expanded the availability of other options for health care coverage and enacted a number of changes to Medicare as well as to Medicaid and CHIP. Qualified individuals and qualified employers are now able to purchase private health insurance coverage through a competitive marketplace, called an Affordable Insurance Exchange (also called Health Insurance Marketplace®, or Marketplace® [2] ). In order to effectively implement and administer these changes, we must provide information to consumers, providers, and other stakeholders through education and outreach programs regarding how existing programs will change and the expanded range of health coverage options available, including private health insurance coverage through the Marketplace®. The APOE allows us to consider a broad range of views and information from interested audiences in connection with this effort and to identify opportunities to enhance the effectiveness of education strategies concerning the Affordable Care Act. The scope of this Panel also includes advising on issues pertaining to the education of providers and stakeholders with respect to the Affordable Care Act and certain provisions of the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act enacted as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) (Pub. L. 111-5).

On January 21, 2011, the Panel's charter was renewed and the Panel was renamed the Advisory Panel for Outreach and Education. The Panel's charter was most recently renewed on January 19, 2021, and will terminate on January 19, 2023 unless renewed by appropriate action.

B. Charter Renewal and Copies of the Charter

In accordance with the January 19, 2021, charter, the APOE will advise the HHS and CMS on developing and implementing education programs that support individuals who are enrolled in or eligible for Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, or coverage available through the Health Insurance Marketplace® and other CMS programs. The scope of this FACA group also includes advising on education of providers and stakeholders with respect to health care reform and certain provisions of the HITECH Act enacted as part of the ARRA.

The charter will terminate on January 19, 2023, unless renewed by appropriate action. The APOE was chartered under 42 U.S.C. 217a, section 222 of the Public Health Service Act, as amended. The APOE is governed by provisions of Public Law 92-463, as amended (5 U.S.C. Appendix 2), which sets forth standards for the formation and use of advisory committees.

In accordance with the renewed charter, the APOE will advise the Secretary and the CMS Administrator concerning optimal strategies for the following:

  • Developing and implementing education and outreach programs for individuals enrolled in, or eligible for, Start Printed Page 26041Medicare, Medicaid, the CHIP, and coverage available through the Health Insurance Marketplace® and other CMS programs.
  • Enhancing the federal government's effectiveness in informing Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, or the Health Insurance Marketplace® consumers, issuers, providers, and stakeholders, pursuant to education and outreach programs of issues regarding these programs, including the appropriate use of public-private partnerships to leverage the resources of the private sector in educating beneficiaries, providers, partners and stakeholders.
  • Expanding outreach to vulnerable and underserved communities, including racial and ethnic minorities, in the context of Medicare, Medicaid, the CHIP and the Health Insurance Marketplace® education programs, and other CMS programs as designated.
  • Assembling and sharing an information base of “best practices” for helping consumers evaluate health coverage options.
  • Building and leveraging existing community infrastructures for information, counseling, and assistance.
  • Drawing the program link between outreach and education, promoting consumer understanding of health care coverage choices, and facilitating consumer selection/enrollment, which in turn support the overarching goal of improved access to quality care, including prevention services, envisioned under the Affordable Care Act.

The current members of the Panel as of April 9, 2021, are: E. Lorraine Bell, Chief Officer, Population Health, Catholic Charities USA; Nazleen Bharmal, Medical Director of Community Partnerships, Cleveland Clinic; Julie Carter, Senior Federal Policy Associate, Medicare Rights Center; Scott Ferguson, Director of Care Transitions and Population Health, Mount Sinai St. Luke's Hospital; Leslie Fried, Senior Director, Center for Benefits Access, National Council on Aging; Jean-Venable Robertson Goode, Professor, Department of Pharmacotherapy and Outcomes Science, School of Pharmacy, Virginia Commonwealth University; Ted Henson, Director of Health Center Performance and Innovation, National Association of Community Health Centers; Joan Ilardo, Director of Research Initiatives, Michigan State University, College of Human Medicine; Cheri Lattimer, Executive Director, National Transitions of Care Coalition; Cori McMahon, Vice President, Tridiuum; Alan Meade, Director of Rehab Services, Holston Medical group; Michael Minor, National Director, H.O.P.E. HHS Partnership, National Baptist Convention USA, Incorporated; Jina Ragland, Associate State Director of Advocacy and Outreach, AARP Nebraska; Morgan Reed, Executive Director, Association for Competitive Technology; Margot Savoy, Chair, Department of Family and Community Medicine, Temple University Physicians; Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz, President and CEO, Better Medicare Alliance; and; Tia Whitaker, Statewide Director, Outreach and Enrollment, Pennsylvania Association of Community Health Centers.

The Secretary's Charter for the APOE is available on the CMS website at: https://www.facadatabase.gov/​FACA/​apex/​FACAPublicCommittee?​id=​a10t0000001gzsCAAQ, or you may obtain a copy of the charter by submitting a request to the contact listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION section of this notice.

II. Request for Nominations

The APOE shall consist of no more than 20 members. The Chair shall either be appointed from among the 20 members, or a Federal official will be designated to serve as the Chair. The charter requires that meetings shall be held up to four times per year. Members will be expected to attend all meetings. The members and the Chair shall be selected from authorities knowledgeable in one or more of the following fields:

  • Senior citizen advocacy
  • Outreach to minority and underserved communities
  • Health communications
  • Disease-related advocacy
  • Disability policy and access
  • Health economics research
  • Health insurers and plans
  • Health IT
  • Direct patient care
  • Matters of labor and retirement

Representatives of the general public may also serve on the APOE.

This notice also requests nominations for three individuals to serve on the APOE to fill current vacancies and possible vacancies that may become available later in 2021. This notice is an invitation to interested organizations or individuals to submit their nominations for membership (no self-nominations will be accepted). The CMS Administrator will appoint new members to the APOE from among those candidates determined to have the expertise required to meet specific agency needs, and in a manner to ensure an appropriate balance of membership. We have an interest in ensuring that the interests of both women and men, members of all racial and ethnic groups, and disabled individuals are adequately represented on the APOE. Therefore, we encourage nominations of qualified candidates who can represent these interests. Any interested organization or person may nominate one or more qualified persons.

Each nomination must include a letter stating that the nominee has expressed a willingness to serve as a Panel member and must be accompanied by a curricula vitae and a brief biographical summary of the nominee's experience.

While we are looking for experts in a number of fields, our most specific needs are for experts in outreach to minority and underserved communities, health communications, disease-related advocacy, disability policy and access, health economics research, behavioral health, health insurers and plans, Health IT, social media, direct patient care, and matters of labor and retirement.

We are requesting that all submitted curricula vitae include the following:

  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Title and current position
  • Professional affiliation
  • Home and business address
  • Telephone and fax numbers
  • Email address
  • Areas of expertise

Phone interviews of nominees may also be requested after review of the nominations.

In order to permit an evaluation of possible sources of conflict of interest, potential candidates will be asked to provide detailed information concerning such matters as financial holdings, consultancies, and research grants or contracts.

Members are invited to serve for 2-year terms, contingent upon the renewal of the APOE by appropriate action prior to its termination. A member may serve after the expiration of that member's term until a successor takes office. Any member appointed to fill a vacancy for an unexpired term shall be appointed for the remainder of that term.

III. Meeting Format and Agenda

In accordance with section 10(a) of the FACA, this notice announces a meeting of the APOE. The agenda for the May 26, 2021 meeting will include the following:

  • Welcome and listening session with CMS leadership
  • Recap of the previous (March 31, 2021) meeting
  • CMS programs, initiatives, and priorities
  • An opportunity for public commentStart Printed Page 26042
  • Meeting summary, review of recommendations, and next steps

Individuals or organizations that wish to make a 5-minute oral presentation on an agenda topic should submit a written copy of the oral presentation to the DFO at the address listed in the ADDRESSES section of this notice by the date listed in the DATES section of this notice. The number of oral presentations may be limited by the time available. Individuals not wishing to make an oral presentation may submit written comments to the DFO at the address listed in the ADDRESSES section of this notice by the date listed in the DATES section of this notice.

IV. Meeting Participation

The meeting is open to the public, but attendance is limited to registered participants. Persons wishing to attend this meeting must register at the website https://www.eventbrite.com/​e/​apoe-may-26-2021-virtual-meeting-tickets-150209828641 or contact the DFO at the address or number listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this notice by the date specified in the DATES section of this notice. This meeting will be held virtually. Individuals who are not registered in advance will be unable to attend the meeting.

V. Collection of Information

This document does not impose information collection requirements, that is, reporting, recordkeeping, or third-party disclosure requirements. Consequently, there is no need for review by the Office of Management and Budget under the authority of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 35).

The Acting Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Elizabeth Richter, having reviewed and approved this document, authorizes Lynette Wilson, who is the Federal Register Liaison, to electronically sign this document for purposes of publication in the Federal Register.

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Dated: May 10, 2021.

Lynette Wilson,

Federal Register Liaison, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

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Footnotes

1.  We note that the Citizen's Advisory Panel on Medicare Education is also referred to as the Advisory Panel on Medicare Education (65 FR 4617). The name was updated in the Second Amended Charter approved on July 24, 2000.

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2.  Health Insurance Marketplace®SM. and Marketplace®SM. are service marks of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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[FR Doc. 2021-10118 Filed 5-11-21; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4120-01-P