Paul McGann (CMS)

Chief Medical Officer for Quality Improvement, Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation


Dr. McGann joined the full-time staff of CMS in 2002, initially in the Quality Improvement Group in the Office of Clinical Standards and Quality (now the Center for Clinical Standards and Quality). His first projects at CMS were to lead the introduction of quality improvement work in nursing homes and home health agencies into the Quality Improvement Organization contracts, beginning with their 8th contract cycle. The results of this work were published in the Annals of Internal Medicine in September 2006.

In July 2007 he was promoted to Deputy Chief Medical Officer for CMS. His responsibilities in that position included leading the re-design and clearance team for the QIO 9th Statement of Work. The procurement of this $1.1B contract was completed successfully in August 2008, and represented the start of CMS work to improve care transitions and reduce hospital re-admission rates for Medicare beneficiaries. He also contributed to the development of the QIO 10th Statement of Work, which was awarded in August 2011. He has also contributed to the ongoing re-design of the ESRD Network Program, identification and reduction of health care disparities, and introduction of the principles of geriatric medicine into numerous CMS programs including measure development, survey and certification, coverage, and value-based purchasing. From February to May 2011, Dr. McGann served as the Acting Chief Medical Officer for CMS, reporting to the CMS Administrator. In August 2011, at the request of the Administrator, Dr. McGann relocated to the CMS Innovation Center to become Co-Director of the Partnership for Patients, together with Dennis Wagner. Both Dennis Wagner and Dr. McGann are also Co-Directors of the new Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative. Dr. McGann’s current position is Chief Medical Officer for Quality Improvement.

Dr. McGann received a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry and a Master’s in Biology from MIT. He graduated from the McGill Faculty of Medicine in Montreal, and completed both internal medicine and geriatric medicine training in Canada, where he practiced geriatric medicine for 14 years. He is board-certified in both internal medicine and geriatric medicine in both the United States and in Canada. He returned to the U.S .in 1995 to become the founding Clinical Director of the J. Paul Sticht Center on Aging of Wake Forest University in North Carolina. He was named the first AGS-HCFA Health Policy Scholar in 1999. He relocated to Baltimore to join the full-time staff of CMS in 2002.

The Partnership for Patients is an unprecedented public-private program of work which commits to achieving two bold, national aims in health care quality improvement by the end of 2014: a 40% reduction in all-cause patient harm in US hospitals, and a 20% reduction in all-payer 30-day readmission rates. The Partnership for Patients has signed up 3,700 of the nation’s hospitals, and more than 8,000 general partners in its three-year effort dramatically to improve patient safety in the nation’s hospitals, across all public and private payers. It involves all Operating Divisions within the Department of Health and Human Services, including CMS, ACL (formerly AoA), AHRQ, CDC, HRSA, ONC, OASH, and many others. The two operational components of the Partnership for Patients are ACA Section 3026 Community Based Care Transitions Program (CCTP), and the “Hospital Engagement Networks”, a program of competitive federal contracts which was awarded to 26 leading hospital organizations on December 9th, 2011. (More information at

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