On Wednesday, October 30th, the MidSouth Practice Transformation Network hosted the second track of Value-Based Care University. While their first event was designed for frontline staff, the latest session aimed to provide practicing clinicians information to effectively implement value-based care approaches and models into their practice.
The evening session commenced with keynote Dr. David Hanekom, former CEO of the Arizona Care Network, who spoke on impending changes, readiness for risk in value-based care, its effects on physician leadership, and network performance. He cautioned of the risk in waiting to embrace value-based care without having a thoughtful transition plan in place, advising that, “You cannot take traditional care delivery… and just scale that to get value-based care.” He also underlined the importance having a strong practice identity, independent of a network’s, emphasizing that a clinic’s individual values are designed to dictate their business partnerships, rather than the other way around. Hanekom’s concluding remarks reminded participants why Alternative Payment Models (APMs) are imperative: they serve to improve the livelihood of patients. “Deliver care to your patients; the rest will follow.” This statement served as a theme for the remainder of the event, echoing through sentiments of the audience and speakers alike.
Dr. Sarah Chouinard then spoke to the power of practice change management in value-based care. As CMO of Community Care of West Virginia and a self-described rural family practice doctor, Dr. Chouinard discussed how thorough self-evaluation of practices leads to greater financial understanding and stability. By better understanding patient population needs and how those needs impact clinical costs, practices can more accurately discern how they may increase savings and mitigate expenditures. Chouinard encouraged attendees to embrace risk-based contracts and payer negotiation, to “be assertive [and] ask for data up front.”
Speaking on success through measures and metrics identification was Dr. Michael Weiss, Vice President of Population Health at Children’s Hospital of Orange County, California. He emphasized the importance of accurate data reporting in achieving the Quadruple Aim while meeting the “Triple Aim” needs of clinicians: the promise of quality care, the ability to earn a living, and the luxury of going home at a reasonable hour. Weiss also noted how ideology and effective metrics can be complementary and allow clinicians to highlight the areas of their practice that are most important to them. He concluded that clinicians must “focus on outcomes, not process,” stressing the importance of keeping utilization metrics simple, timely and accurate.
The fourth and final speaker was Dr. Russell Rothman, Principal Investigator of the MidSouth PTN, who presented how to best optimize health information technology (HIT) in value-based care. Citing the statistic that two-thirds of physicians feel burnt out due to excessive and ineffectual use of electronic health records, Rothman detailed how and why maximizing effective electronic health record (EHR) usage prior to, during, and after clinical encounters is indispensable. He then advised clinicians to frequently ask themselves, “What can we do when the patient is here?” shifting focus back to directly addressing patient needs and outcomes. This focus on improving outcomes is at the core of value-based care. He concluded by emphasizing the need to approach HIT implementation with a team-based approach, and reminding attendees of the merits of frequent, patient-centered collaboration
The event closed with an interactive Q & A panel with the four presenters, in which attendees fielded questions about payer negotiation, the value of APMs for Safety Net practices, and more.
After two successful VBCU events, VUMC’s MidSouth PTN is now developing its third track, aimed at healthcare executives. As more information is available, we will update our listserv and distribute information on our LinkedIn.
For more information about VBCU and available value-based care resources, please visit our VBCU home page.