Comprehensive assessment offers employers strategies to optimize the delivery of care to their workforces
WASHINGTON – April 27, 2020 – Over the last few decades primary care has suffered due to misalignment in how primary care practices are paid, lack of care coordination and access issues. Essential to helping people stay healthy and manage chronic conditions, this has compromised the ability of the provider to treat the whole person rather than just the presenting condition. To better understand which practices and strategies drive superior value to improve outcomes and mitigate costs within a primary care practice, the National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions (National Alliance) released a comprehensive assessment for employers and other plan sponsors.
“While employers have always sought value for their health benefit dollars, the unprecedented revenue loss and business disruption for so many due to COVID-19 adds an even greater urgency to maximize the return on investment for their healthcare spend,” said Michael Thompson, president and CEO, National Alliance. “Optimally, advanced primary care programs can save employers as much as 15% of their overall healthcare costs while also providing a steady source of income to these critically important providers.”
The report, Achieving Value through Advanced Primary Care, identifies what purchasers and health plans should consider when investing in an advanced primary care (APC) strategy. Developed in collaboration with a diverse array of subject matter experts, coalition leaders and purchasers, the findings and recommendations are based on the National Alliance’s eValue8 assessment process and participation of five leading primary care organizations: Catalyst Health Network, Premise Health, R-Health, Optum and WeCare TLC.
When properly structured and reimbursed, APC is critical to lowering healthcare costs and improving health. To accomplish this, the National Alliance identified the following APC attributes:
- Enhanced Access for Patients – Offer convenient access, same day appointments, walk-ins, virtual access and remove financial barriers to primary care
- More Time with Patients – Improve patient engagement and support, shared decision-making and understanding of impact of social determinants of health
- Realigned Payment Methods – Focus on patient-centered experience and outcomes, quality and efficiency metrics, and deemphasize visit volume
- Organizational & Infrastructure Backbone – Identify relevant analytics, reporting and communication, and ensure continuous staff training
- Behavioral Health Integration – Even more critical in the current COVID-19 environment, screen for behavioral health concerns (e.g., depression, anxiety, substance use disorder) and coordination of care
- Disciplined Focus on Health Improvement – Manage risk stratification and population health, ensure a systematic approach to gaps in care
- Referral Management – Establish more limited, appropriate and high-quality referral practices, coordination and reintegration of patient care
To further assist employers in understanding APC so as to optimize and improve the delivery of care to their employees, the National Alliance also developed an advance primary care companion infographic which can be found here.
About National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions
The National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions is a nonprofit network of business coalitions, representing more than 12,000 purchasers and 45 million Americans, spending more than $300 billion annually on healthcare. The National Alliance is dedicated to driving innovation, health and value along with its coalition members through the collective action of public and private purchasers. To learn more, visit nationalalliancehealth.org, connect with us on Twitter and LinkedIn.
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