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Eiligible Specialties and Subspecialties for increased payment under Affordable Care Act


The Affordable Care Act specifies increased payments for three primary care medical specialties: Family Medicine, General Internal Medicine and Pediatrics. The Final Rule interprets this language to include some subspecialties with a relation to the original three, but does not list the subspecialties.

Subspecialists that qualify for higher payment are those recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS) or American Osteopathic Association (AOA). For purposes of the rule, “General Internal Medicine” encompasses “Internal Medicine” and all recognized subspecialties. The websites of these organizations currently list the following subspecialty certifications within each specialty designation:

American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS)

Family Medicine – Adolescent Medicine; Geriatric Medicine; Hospice and Palliative Medicine; Sleep Medicine; Sports Medicine

Internal Medicine – Adolescent Medicine; Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology; Cardiovascular Disease; Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology; Critical Care Medicine; Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism; Gastroenterology; Geriatric Medicine; Hematology; Hospice and Palliative Medicine; Infectious Disease; Interventional Cardiology; Medical Oncology; Nephrology; Pulmonary Disease; Rheumatology; Sleep Medicine; Sports Medicine: Transplant Hepatology.

Pediatrics – Adolescent Medicine; Child Abuse Pediatrics; Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics; Hospice and Palliative Medicine; Medical Toxicology; Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine; Neurodevelopmental Disabilities, Pediatric Cardiology; Pediatric Critical Care Medicine; Pediatric Emergency Medicine; Pediatric Endocrinology; Pediatric Gastroenterology; Pediatric Hematology-Oncology; Pediatric Infectious Diseases; Pediatric Nephrology; Pediatric Pulmonology; Pediatric Rheumatology, Pediatric Transplant Hepatology; Sleep Medicine; Sports Medicine.

American Osteopathic Association (AOA)

Family Physicians – No subspecialties

Internal Medicine – Allergy/Immunology; Cardiology; Endocrinology; Gastroenterology; Hematology; Hematology/Oncology; Infectious Disease; Pulmonary Diseases; Nephrology; Oncology; Rheumatology.

Pediatrics – Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine, Neonatology, Pediatric Allergy/immunology, Pediatric Endocrinology, Pediatric Pulmonology.

American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS)

The ABPS does not certify subspecialists. Therefore, eligible certifications are: American Board of Family Medicine Obstetrics; Board of Certification in Family Practice; and Board of Certification in Internal Medicine. There is no Board certification specific to Pediatrics.

Only physicians who can legitimately self-attest to a specialty designation of (general) internal medicine, family medicine or pediatric medicine or a subspecialty within those specialties recognized by the American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS), American Osteopathic Association (AOA) or American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS) qualify.

The primary care provider rate increase does apply to CHIP Medicaid expansions but not separate (stand-alone) CHIPs. Qualified phyicians who render the primary care services and vaccine administration services specified in the regulation will receive the benefit of higher payment for services provided to these Medicaid beneficiaries.


Recent FAQs: http://www.medicaid.gov/AffordableCareAct/Provisions/Downloads/Q-andA-Managed-Care-Increased-Payments-for-PCPs.pdf 

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