CMS Calls for Technical Expert Panel Applicants

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently announced it is convening two technical expert panels (TEPs):

  • Hospice Special Focus Program Technical Expert Panel
  • Health Equity Structural Measure Technical Expert Panel.

NAHC members may be interested in applying for one or both of these panels.  Details of the TEPs and application/nomination instructions are below.  The deadline to apply or nominate someone is August 12.


NAHC has been looking for the Hospice Special Focus Program (SFP) TEP announcement since CMS indicated in the FY2023 Hospice Proposed Rule that they intended to convene a TEP on this topic and have the TEP’s work completed in time to include a proposed SFP in the FY2024 Hospice Proposed Rule.  This proposed rule is anticipated to be published in the Federal Register towards the end of April next year.  The Hospice SFP is part of the required hospice survey reforms of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021. Details of the TEP and how to apply are below.

Project Overview:

  • The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has contracted with Abt Associates to develop a hospice Special Focus Program (SFP). The contract number is 75FCMC18D0014, Task Order 75FCMC19F0001. As part of the Special Focus Program (SFP) development process, CMS asks contractors to convene groups of stakeholders and experts who contribute feedback and thoughtful input to the contractor during program development.
  • Provisions in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 direct the Secretary to create a SFP for poor-performing hospice programs, set out authority for imposing enforcement remedies for noncompliant hospice programs, and require the development and implementation of a range of remedies as well as procedures for appealing determinations. In the calendar year 2022 HH PPS final rule, it was stated that additional collaboration would be sought to further develop the methodology for the SFP through a TEP.

Project Objectives:

  • To provide input on the SFP algorithm that will be used to identify hospices that have substantially failed to meet applicable Medicare requirements based on identified criteria and measures.
  • To develop public reporting requirements for the SFP (e.g., candidate list, SFP program participants, graduates, termination, etc.) and to recommend methods to communicate this information in a manner that is prominent, easily accessible, readily understandable, and searchable for the general public.

TEP Expected Time Commitment:

  • Two-to-four hours to review TEP related materials beginning no earlier than August 2022
  • Five-to-seven hours for TEP orientation and facilitated discussion meetings in the Summer/Fall of 2022

TEP Requirements: A TEP of approximately 9-11 individuals will be selected to provide input. The TEP will be composed of individuals with the following areas of expertise and perspectives:

  • National and state hospice associations
  • Consumers and/or patient advocacy organizations
  • Hospice Providers (at least one member of a not-for profit hospice provider)
  • Hospice staff knowledgeable of surveys and audits
  • Knowledge of the CMS Special Focus Facility (SFF) program for nursing homes

Additional information and instructions for applying for this TEP or for nominating someone for the TEP can be found here.


The concept of a health equity structural measure as part of the quality reporting program was part of the hospice and home health proposed rules this year. Comments for the hospice proposed rule were due earlier this summer and are currently under review by CMS.  Comments for the home health proposed rule are not due until August, but CMS is moving forward with a TEP on the topic.  Details of the TEP and how to apply are below.


  • The Technical Expert Panel (TEP) nomination period opens on July 15, 2022 and closes on August 12, 2022. Submit all nomination materials by the closing date.

Project Overview:

  • CMS contracted with Abt Associates, Inc. to provide quality measure maintenance and support including the development of a home health and hospice health equity structural quality measure. The contract name is Measure & Instrument Development and Support (MIDS): Home Health and Hospice Quality Reporting Program Quality Measures and Assessment Instruments Development, Modification and Maintenance, & Quality Reporting Program Oversight Support. The contract number is 5FCMC18D0014, Task Order number 75FCMC19F0001. As part of its measure development process, Abt convenes groups of stakeholders who contribute to the direction and provide thoughtful input to the measure developer during measure development and maintenance.

Seeking the Following Perspectives/Expertise:

  • We are seeking individuals with differing perspectives and areas of expertise, such as representatives from patient advocacy groups, clinical and administrative staff from home health and hospice providers, and health equity experts.
  • Health equity experts may include (but will not be limited to) representatives from diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives in health care; methodologists and researchers who focus on health equity in clinical settings; and others with expertise in health equity related quality measurement.

TEP Expected Time Commitment:

The total project duration is October 2022 – February 2023.  The Health Equity Technical Expert Panel (HE TEP) will convene no more than twice via teleconference:

  • Meet and Greet Meeting, late October 2022
  • HE TEP 1-Day Meeting, mid-November 2022

Additional TEP time commitments will include:

  • Reviewing materials in preparation for the HE TEP 1-Day Meeting, which will be sent to members one week prior to the meeting (i.e., early November).
  • Providing one round of feedback on the HE TEP summary report, which will be drafted by the

measure developer and distributed to HE TEP members for review in January-February 2023.

Additional information and instructions for applying for this TEP or for nominating someone for the TEP can be found here.