Recapping Value-Based Payment – Getting from Here to There…

By | HealthEdge, HCEG Top 10, Next Generation Payment Models, Webinar Series, Value-Based Payment/Care | No Comments

Our sponsor partner HealthEdge hosted HCEG’s Webinar Series event in March: Value-Based Payments – Getting from here to there…

Harry Merkin, VP of Marketing at HealthEdge and Dave Mika VP of Enterprise Core System Operations at Independent Health shared insight and real world experience on how health plans and their provider networks can transition from traditional fee for service (FFS) to value-based payment (VBP).

This blog post recaps highlights of the webinar and provides access to additional information from the webinar. A recording of the webinar can be found here. You can also check out this Twitter Moment summarizing live Tweets from the webinar.

Value-Based Payment Began in the Late 1990’s 

In the late 1990’s, capitation models began paving the way for change from traditional FFS payment models to models focused on helping establish effective, cost-efficient practice models. In the last few years, value-based payments have become the latest and greatest models for reimbursement of care. The importance of value-based payments is supported by HealthCare Executive Group members ranking Value-Based Payment as #3 on the 2018 HCEG Top 10 list.

Moreover, recent statements by current and former HHS officials have supported the need for value-based payment:

“There is no turning back to an unsustainable system that pays for procedures rather than value”, and the transition “needs to accelerate dramatically.” – Alex Azar, Secretary of HHS, 3/5/18 at the Federation of American Hospitals’ conference

“I highly encourage health care leaders to listen intently to his full remarks. The transition to value is moving forward; if you aren’t already preparing for it, it is time to get on-board.“ – Michael Levitt, former governor of Utah and former HHS Secretary

Value-Based Payment Can Lower Costs and Improve Outcomes

Harry Merkin shared the results of a November 2017 Humana study showing that VBP programs achieve meaningful gains in cost and quality vs. traditional FFS methods with total healthcare costs associated with VBC plans 15% lower than care costs of FFS plans. And a more recent survey by the Healthcare Financial Management Association revealed that 70% of healthcare organizations participating in VBP programs have achieved positive results.

Value-based Payment Must Address the Quadruple Aim

Independent Health’s Dave Mika shared real-world insight into the experience his organization has witnessed. A key focus raised by Dave is that health plans looking to implement or extend value-based payment programs must address the four pillars of the Quadruple Aim

  1. Enhancing patient experience
  2. Improving population health
  3. Reducing costs
  4. Improving the work life of health care providers

Questions from Webinar Participants About Value-Based Payment

HCEG webinar series events always include the opportunity for questions from participants and this webinar was no exception. Two of many questions included the following short, paraphrased responses by Dave Mika – and other questions can be obtained from the webinar recording:

What is the key to gaining alignment with PCP’s?

Answer: Actively reaching out to and collaborating with key stakeholders in the local community.

What data has proven to be most useful to the provider network?

Answer: Information on patient gaps in care– ideally provided at the point of care in the physician’s workflow – can be very effective in improving value.

And More on How to Get There from Here…

In addition to the above, the webinar addressed the following considerations for transitioning from traditional FFS programs to VBP programs:

  • Aligning delivery and reimbursement models with high-performing providers
  • Tools for members to self-manage and self-navigate the care delivery system
  • Technology support including web and digital capabilities

The move to value-based reimbursement appears inevitable, and only those health plans and providers that begin to transition and adapt today will be successful in the future. Change doesn’t happen overnight. To learn more about how making the transition from FFS to VBP, check out the webinar recording, consider contacting HealthEdge for more information and keep in touch with the HealthCare Executive Group by connecting with us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and subscribing to our newsletter.

“Specialty Networks and Risk Sharing at Scale” – A Session at HCEG’s Annual Forum

By | Annual Forum, Next Generation Payment Models, Value-Based Payment/Care | No Comments

“Specialty Networks and Risk Sharing at Scale” – Monday, September 18th at 3:15PM – 4:30PM

At this year’s 29th Annual Forum in Nashville, TN, Dr. Richard Popiel, EVP & Chief Medical Officer at Cambia Health Solutions, moderates a panel presenting and discussing the current needs, opportunities, and challenges associated with improving the appropriateness, outcomes and affordability of specialty care services; specifically the clinical decision support mechanisms and other solutions that risk-sharing, value-based environments need to simplify, encode and utilize complex clinical content into a standardized, repeatable, evidence-based system for making decisions supporting an organization’s clinical programs.

Dr. Popiel and other healthcare industry experts will present how we as a healthcare system can improve healthcare outcomes and reduce costs by shifting to value and risk sharing arrangements. Insight into how disruptive analytics and analytical approaches to cost trend monitoring and containment will be shared and interactive opportunities to engage will be available.

Healthcare Thought Leaders Share Valuable Insight at HCEG Annual Forum

Panel Moderator – Richard Popiel MD MBA 

Dr. Richard Popiel, Cambia Health Solutions

Richard Popiel, M.D., MBA, Executive Vice President, Healthcare Services & Chief Medical Officer, Cambia Health Solutions & Regence Health Insurance Company

Dr. Richard Popiel leads medical strategy for Regence health insurance plans and provides executive leadership on care initiatives and cost management activities across the corporation. He came to Regence from Horizon Healthcare Innovations, where he was president and chief operating officer. Dr. Popiel earned a B.S. in biology and his M.D. at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. He also holds an M.B.A. from Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management. He is board-certified in internal medicine.

Panelists include: (Additional panelists are pending confirmation)

Brandon Cady

Brandon Cady – President/CEO at AIM Specialty Health

Brandon Cady is the President and Chief Executive Officer of AIM Specialty Health® (AIM). Brandon joined AIM in 2002 and executed top line growth initiatives that expanded the business into one of the largest and most successful specialty benefits management companies in the United States.

Brandon has held a variety of leadership positions within hospital systems, health plans, and emerging technology companies. Brandon earned his master’s degree in Health Services Administration from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and a Bachelor of Business Management from the University of Iowa.

Dunston Almeida

Dunston Almeida – Executive VP of M&A Strategy and Business Development at Evicore

Dunston Almeida serves as an Executive Vice President of M&A Strategy and Business Development at eviCore healthcare, LLC. Dunston focuses on new strategic initiatives and partnerships, driving inorganic growth via mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and working with the Board and Executive Team on the company’s Strategy Council. He also supports the formulation of eviCore’s public policy and regulatory efforts. He has more than 20 years of experience in technology.

 

The 2017 HCEG Annual Forum

The HCEG Annual Forum provides the setting and platform for senior level executives from across the healthcare spectrum to come together for 2-3 days each year to discuss the continuous innovation, evolution and transformation of the industry. Attendees are granted direct access to approximately 100 peers, thought-leaders and solutions providers from around the country; all facing similar obstacles and providing opportunities, while engaging in real, relevant and productive dialog.

This year’s 29th Annual Forum takes place in Nashville, TN on September 18th -20th. For more information on this years annual forum, see this page.

Highlights from Day 1 of 2017 AHIP National Health Policy Conference

By | AHIP, Payers, Delivery System Transformation, Healthcare Policy, Next Generation Payment Models, Value-Based Payment/Care | No Comments

The 2017 AHIP National Health Policy Conference kicked off today in Washington, DC.

Political, business, and health care leaders from across the nation gathered to dive deeply into our nation’s top policy priorities in an effort to move forward in today’s uncertain healthcare environment.

What a period for healthcare reform in the United States!

In addition to some general comments about healthcare policy and politics, today’s sessions addressed topics such as the following:

  • Risk-sharing and Cost Control
  • Value-based Care
  • Pharmacy Costs
  • Medicaid Exchanges
  • Importance of Social Determinants of Health

Social shares from conference attendees

As is happening more and more at many of today’s top healthcare conferences, conference proceedings, insights and other information were shared on Twitter – among other social channels. Here’s a sample of some interesting shares from Day 1 of the 2017 AHIP National Health Policy Conference.

Thanks to all those noted below who took the time to share with those who were unable to attend the conference.

General Stuff

HandleTweet
@ajmc_journalThere’s still a basic misunderstanding of how health insurance works, says @AHIPCoverage’s Tavenner
@rpalme01@MD_Insurance @al_redmer ACA “status quo is not an option, status quo is not a solution”  #ACA
@nancyrwiseNewt Gingrich sure that SOME bill will be passed this session…  but no direction on what it will include.  #AHCA
@nancyrwiseT. Nickel, thank you: “Association Health Plans are awesome… until they are not”  @NAIC_News

Cost of Healthcare & Risk-Sharing

HandleTweet
@ajmc_journalThe only cost containment strategy that works is cost sharing but it can be such a burden that it takes care away–@chipkahn
@avercloudHealthcare payers: Make the move from pilot to full-scale bundled payment adoption. Let’s discuss at #AHIPPolicy
@leah_a_brownThe discussion a few years ago was about coverage, now healthcare 2.0 is about cost.
@mahphealthGood point by MD Comm. Al Redmer Jr on NAIC panel Can’t do anything on premiums unless moderate cost of delivering #healthcare
@nancyrwiseGreat quote: “Pay for value = transferring risk to providers.” M. Chernew
@nancyrwiseIf health orgs are bigger & more integrated, they are better positioned to own market power: unlikely to lower costs. M. Chernew
@suemontgomery2Cost of premiums is all about the cost of delivering care. – Ted Nickel at #AHIPPolicy

Value-based Care & Reimbursement

HandleTweet
@ahipcoverageConsumers want affordable coverage & high-quality care – that’s what value-based care delivers.
@avercloudDebate the policy, but value-based healthcare is here to stay. Let’s discuss bundled payment success at upcoming #AHIPPolicy

Pharmacy

HandleTweet
@springstexPrescription drug costs pass physician services as biggest slice of health insurance premium
@rpalme01Keep talking to your local pharmacist and sharing what he tells you.

Medicaid Exchanges, Access & Importance of Social Determinants of Health

HandleTweet
@ajmc_journalHealthcare reform is a question of access vs true availability. The devil is truly in the details, said @AndyGurmanMD
@nancyrwiseInterested in continuing conversations about potential intersection of #Medicaid and Exchange markets in #healthcare #simplicity
@ahipcoverageFrom transportation, housing & environmental health, plans are addressing social determinants of health

Keep on Top of More Insight on Healthcare Reform

Be sure to follow the Healthcare Executive Group on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn where we share insight into the challenges, opportunities and issues facing healthcare executives and others in today’s fast-changing healthcare environment.

HCEG Virtual Panel Summary

By | HCEG Top 10, Next Generation Payment Models

2015.08.12 - Reimbursementy

On Thursday, August 6th, HCEG presented and HTMS?sponsored a Virtual Panel??From Concept to Reality: Practical Considerations of Implementing Alternative Reimbursement Models.?? Below is a summary of the call.

To those of us who have been in the healthcare industry for more than a few years it seems we?re always talking about alternatives to fee-for-service reimbursement.? Lots and lots of talk, and only bits of action?as an industry we?re a bit stuck in the gap between theory and practice.

To help us develop practical reimbursement innovation we were fortunate to have panelists today who are not only expert thinkers, they?re expert doers.? The panelists generously shared their practical experience in value-based reimbursement from both payer and provider perspectives.

  1. Craig Samitt, MD, MBA, Partner and Global Provider Practice Leader dug into the details of physician incentive alignment, using his experience at Dean Clinic where 75% of provider revenue was capitated. He offered 9 lessons learned:
  2. Following Dr. DiLoreto, Dan Tuteur, Chief Strategy Officer at Colorado HealthOP shared the pros and cons of being in a startup health plan trying to bring reimbursement and benefit innovation to a well-established marketplace. Benefiting from a blank slate and no historical friction with providers, but handicapped by the inability to promise any patient volume, Colorado HealthOP was successful in finding providers who were already on the path from volume-to-value and capitalize on their interest and experience.? Interestingly, Colorado HealthOP is able to use their benefit agreements to drive change among their members and support from providers.? Members, who complete a health survey, have a basic lab panel done, and select primary care providers are rewarded with richer outpatient mental health and primary care benefits.? Happily, this dynamic has been popular with providers.? Dan predicts Colorado HealthOP will consider capitation for primary care and some limited bundled payments for orthopedics and physical therapy, but significant innovation won?t be implemented until 2017 and thereafter.
  3. David DiLoreto, MD, CEO at Presence Health Partners, opened the discussion by walking us through how his ACO, which represents the continuum of providers, has leveraged its significant experience with government programs into the commercial arena.
    1. Moving from volume to value is a team effort; including physicians from the get-go is crucial.
    2. Don?t look to compensation redesign to fix everything. Peer pressure alone works very well in driving certain desirable changes regardless of reimbursement structures.
    3. Design a balanced mix of incentives. For example, individual physician production is still important, so don?t build compensation formulae that hurt production unnecessarily.
    4. Build a multi-tiered structure including global, departmental, and physician level components. Patient satisfaction and productivity should be evaluated for individual physicians, while quality and access are more meaningfully measured at the departmental level.
    5. Measure at the outset for two reasons?to understand baseline performance, and to benefit from the phenomenon that measurement alone tends to drive behavior changes.
    6. Offer alternatives. Physicians need multiple ?points of entry? depending on the nature of their specialty and their patients.
    7. Size matters?incentives, thresholds, have to be big enough to get the attention of providers and make them change in the desirable direction.
    8. Remember to keep hurdles low enough that providers have confidence they can get over them.
    9. Prepare to change based on evidence and experience.

The panelists also addressed several questions:

Q: When thinking about both impact and level of interest, what are the thresholds in terms of percent of revenue, percent of patients, or other levels do you think apply when trying to move to value-based reimbursement?? How much of a provider?s business must apply for them to be willing to make the investment in changes in practice to participate in an alternative reimbursement scheme?

A: Dr. DiLoreto shared that in his experience, 10% of a provider?s patients falling under value-based reimbursement is sufficient to get the provider?s attention; for a health system, 20-30% of total revenue is the threshold.

A: Dr. Samitt added that once a practice or patient population yields 30-40% of total revenue from value-based payments, the ROI for the provider is enough to drive the entire practice to a population health approach.? Dr. Samitt volunteered that in talking to physicians, he found using percentages was much less compelling than absolute dollars.? 5% seems small; $5,000 seems ?worth the hassle? of making the necessary changes.

A: Dan Tuteur explained that as a start up, they have no opportunity to drive these kinds of numbers, so instead of focusing on the volume of patients or revenue impact, they gravitated to physician who were already on the road to accepting alternative reimbursement.

Q: Can you comment on whether and how you used both benefits and provider contracts to change provider practices?

A: Dan Tuteur opened the discussion by explaining how they began by encouraging shopping for best prices and developing ways to make price transparency an advantage for members.? Colorado HealthOP hired an outside firm to manage this with members, but they found that providers? contract restrictions (with competing plans) made it difficult, in particular the way some contracts defined tiers.? They were helped by the benefit approach of offering better outpatient mental health and primary care coverage if patients participated in the wellness programs summarized above.

A: Dr. DiLoreto talked about the prevalent under-use of wellness benefits by members.? To offset member reluctance, they incorporated encouraging use of wellness benefits in provider contracts, which in turn gets more patients to their primary care physicians.? This has a secondary advantage for the provider and health plans by generating more primary care claims, which is crucial to member attribution to an ACO.

Q: Do you see a future where fee-for-service is the exception?

A: Dan Tuteur explained that as a start up their challenge in moving beyond vanilla fee-for-service is lack of historical data about their rapidly growing membership, where patterns of utilization were very different in year one than in year two.? With an accumulation of data, he believes it will be possible to estimate how quickly such a change could come.

A: Dr. Samitt wrapped up the conversation by stating that it depends on what we mean by fee-for-service?plain old payments without quality measures will become the exception within the next few years, but fee-for-service with quality incentives can and should persist.

Next Stage of Reimbursements

By | Payers, Next Generation Payment Models

2015.07.28 - ReimbursementyTo those of us who have been in the healthcare industry for more than a few years, the perennial discussion about moving away from fee-for-service is getting a bit tiresome when do we stop talking and start doing on a broad scale.

When we look back at the 1960’s (Medicare and Medicaid were passed in 1965), the story was about getting more dollars into the system to pay for the care of elderly and disadvantaged populations. Today, we’re in a serious hunt to find ways to wring dollars out of the system. And the journey we’ve taken with Medicare tells us a lot about what has happened and will happen in the commercial sector.

When Medicare was implemented we paid providers based on submitted charges what seems like a quaint and na’ve approach, but alternatives didn’t show up until 1972 (the HMO Act), with the first reimbursement reform appearing in 1989 when the first step toward non-charge based reimbursement was legislated for Medicare a requirement that professional providers be paid according to a relative value scale. Medicare HMOs didn’t appear until 1997. Every few years another tweak in benefits or payments was legislated, with 2003 bringing the first prescription drug coverage. 2008 started Medicare, tracked in large part by commercial health plans, down the road to mandated reporting on quality measures, federally-incented investments in EHRs, and penalties + payments to drive better, more cost-effective care.

Finally we capped off the decade with the passage of the Affordable Care Act which included not only reforms to the insurance business but various permanent programs to reduce overall costs and improve outcomes. As we look to 2016, when HHS plans to make 30% of its fee for service payments through alternative models and 85% of payments tied to quality or value, growing in 2018 to 50% and 90% respectively, it’s clear we’re moving into a serious doing phase.

For some expert thinking on what this doing phase looks like already and where it’s headed, please join us for our panel discussion From Concept to Reality: Practical Considerations of Implementing Alternative Reimbursement Models. To understand the doing phase, we need to listen to expert doers, and we will be privileged to hear from three of them.

Dr. DiLoreto will talk about how delivery systems are responding to new reimbursement models and provide his perspective on ways payers can work more effectively with their networks.

2015.07.28 - Reimbursementy PromoDan Tuteur will share his lessons from developing innovative reimbursement methods in a startup health plan forging brand new provider relationships.

Craig Samitt will talk about actualizing the vision of changing physician behavior by aligning incentives based on his personal experience.

After their respective brief presentations the panel will take your questions and engage in a lively discussion. Please do not miss this opportunity to listen to and talk about the real world of alternative reimbursement.