Therapist with patient
26th Feb

Several of our clinical teams recently experienced something new…CMS representatives arrived at their facility to assess compliance with a new initiative Patients Over Paperwork. In preparation for this process, review the following information, taken directly from


What is Patients Over Paperwork?

At CMS, our top priority is putting patients first. In October, CMS Administrator Seema Verma announced the “Patients Over Paperwork” initiative, which is in accord with President Trump’s Executive Order that directs federal agencies to “cut the red tape” to reduce burdensome regulations. Through “Patients over Paperwork,” CMS established an internal process to evaluate and streamline regulations with a goal to reduce unnecessary burden, to increase efficiencies, and to improve the beneficiary experience. In carrying out this internal process, CMS is moving the needle and removing regulatory obstacles that get in the way of providers spending time with patients.


Specifically, we aim to:

  • Increase the number of satisfied customers – clinicians, institutional providers, health plans, etc. engaged through direct and indirect outreach;
  • Decrease the hours and dollars clinicians and providers spend on CMS-mandated compliance; and
  • Increase the proportion of tasks that CMS customers can do in a completely digital way.


How does “Patients over Paperwork” work?

Steering Committee: Patients over Paperwork is well underway. We have established an executive-level Burden Reduction Steering Committee, which will take the lead on coordinating burden reduction across all of CMS. This Steering Committee oversees and prioritizes these reform efforts and ensures we have the right collaboration across the Agency to drive results.

Customer Centered Workgroups: We established customer-centered workgroups focusing first on clinicians, beneficiaries, and institutional providers. The job of these workgroups is to learn from and understand the customer experience, internalize it, and remember these perspectives as we do this work. Over time, we will establish similar workgroups for health plans, states and suppliers.

Journey Mapping: We will use tools to capture customer perspectives, like human-centered design and journey mapping the customer experience. Also, we will establish mechanisms to share across CMS what we learn from our customers so we all benefit from that input. We will develop multiple stakeholder journey maps over the coming months.


A journey map is developed with the customer, and visually depicts clinician experiences, including pain-points, and challenges or roadblocks to effective care delivery. Each map is developed with our customers in the room with us. During the session we start to identify trends and patterns of experiences across providers, and generate more detailed insights about their experiences. Ultimately this work can help CMS to have a more holistic view of the day-to-day experience of providers, leading to creative solutions to reduce administrative and regulatory burden.

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