Population Health and the Hearst Health Prize

by Gregg A. Masters, MPH

We’re in the midst of the emergence of a profession and outright industry. ‘Population Health‘ congeals and integrates healthcare stakeholders across a continuum of healthcare infrastructure (acute, chronic, post acute/long term care) spanning public health, the emerging digital health ecosystem (including telehealth and telemedicine), accountable care or clinically integrated, risk bearing delivery systems and the triple aim – better experience of care, improved outcomes at lower per capita costs.

With limited committed academic infrastructure – the Jefferson College of Population Health (JCPH), follow via twitter @JeffersonJCPH, is the sole stand alone academic, degree granting institution in the U.S., and the Journal of Population Health Management a go-to source of empirical knowledge and evidence based best practices are two noteworthy assets.

Enter the collaboration between Hearst Health (follow via @HearstHealth) and JCPH. For context on the Hearst Health Prize for Excellence in Population Health, checkout the interview with Gregory Dorn, MD, President, Hearst Health sourced at the Population Health Colloquium 2015 in Philadelphia earlier this year via our colleague Douglas Goldstein (@eFuturist).

On PopHealth Week this Wednesday, September 16th 2015 at 10:30AM PT/1:30PM ET our special guests include David Nash, MD, MBA Dean of the Jefferson College of Population Health and Gregory Dorn, MD, President of Hearst Health @HearstHealth. PopHealthWeek-logo-TWTTR-sq

Per Hearst Health and JCPH joint announcement:

Population health is essential to transforming from an illness-centered healthcare system to one focused on protecting and improving health.  We created this prize to help promote promising new ideas in the field that will help to improve health outcomes, and thus proliferate best practices more rapidly.  Our goal is to discover, support and showcase the work of an individual, group, organization or institution that has successfully implemented a population health program or intervention that has made a measurable difference.

On the broadcast today, we’ll discuss Population Health and the innovative Hearst Health Prize for Excellence in Population Health. For more information about this competition including eligibility, terms and the application download, click here.

The winner will receive a $100,000 cash prize in recognition of outstanding achievement in managing or improving population health. This award is a combined effort of Hearst Health and the Jefferson College of Population Health.

Join us!

 

Meet Steven Blumberg AtlantiCare Health Solutions

by Fred Goldstein

This week on PopHealth Week oPopHealthWeek-logo-TWTTR-squr special guest is Steven Blumberg, Senior Vice President and Executive Director of AtlantiCare Health Solutions, AtlantiCare’s accountable care organization. A member of AtlantiCare’s executive leadership team, he has responsibility for development of population health models, programing and delivery. Blumberg works with payors and employers to bring value-based purchasing of health services to the marketplace. Blumberg’s more than 25 years of health care leadership experience includes strategic planning, business development, joint ventures, group practice leadership, risk model development and operational integration. He has worked with both large group practices as well as major health systems.

AtlantiCare, located in New Jersey is the region’s largest healthcare organization and largest non-casino employer with more than 5,170 employees and 600 physicians in nearly 70 locations.atlanticare

AtlantiCare Health Solutions is an accountable care organization (ACO). Services offerd through their ACO includes Primary Care Plus, data analytics and information sharing through an EMR, integrated care managers, a hospitalist program and an employee engagement, prevention and wellness program.  The program also offers a patient portal, mobile app and Well4Life, whose mission is to build healthy communities.  So join PopHealth Week as we discuss ACO’s, population health and some of the innovative services offered by AtlantiCare Health Solutions.

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Frederic S. Goldstein is President and Founder Accountable Health, LLC, Past Board Chair, Board of Directors, Population Health Alliance, and co-founder of PopHealth Week.

Meet Kaveh Safavi MD Accenture

Join PopHealth Week Wednesday June 10 at 12 PM Eastern/9AM Pacific with our special guest:

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Kaveh Safavi, MD, JD managing director for global healthcare business at Accenture. Dr. Safavi is responsible for developing and driving a growth strategy that differentiates Accenture’s offerings for providers, health insurers and public and private health systems across the globe. PopHealthWeek-logo-TWTTR-sq

Accenture Health Management Services offer solutions to help patients, providers and risk-bearers coordinate and manage population health and wellness across care settings in a way that ensures optimal health outcomes, efficient healthcare spend and drives affordability.

We’ll be discussing some of Kaveh’s thoughts on population health and where he believes providers should be focusing their efforts.

Sun Health, CMS, Population Health and Jennifer Drago

by Fred Goldstein

PopHealth Week will be featuring Jennifer Drago EVP of Population Health at Sun Health. This week’s show will focus on some of the innovative programs that Sun Health offers in the seniors market including their Care Transitions Program  which has a CMS Community-based Care Transitions Program (CCTP) contract. CMS just  Community-based Care Transitions Programrenewed the Sun Health CCTP contract and increased the number of patients to be managed.

The CCTP  “tests models for improving care transitions from the hospital to other settings and reducing readmissions for high-risk Medicare beneficiaries.”  There are currently 72 sites participating in the CCTP pilot.

Per CMS:

  • Approximately 2.6 million seniors, or 1 in 5 are readmitted within 30 days
  • The cost of these readmissions is over $26 billion per year
  • The goal is to reduce readmission 20% per year
  • The program is to run for 5 years
  • The budget was estimated at $300 million over 5 years

To date 29 of the total 101 CCTP-funded sites have withdrawn or been ended.

The CMS First Annual Report stated that of the 48 programs started in 2012 only four programs made statistically significant gains in reducing the ratio of readmissions to discharges from the participating hospitals.

PopHealthWeek-logo-TWTTR-sqBut there is more to this story.

As with other CMS programs there are some concerns regarding the study methodology. The argument against the current methodology, which measures re-admissions within 30 days as a percent of discharges may penalize hospitals, or communities that have worked to reduce hospital discharges in total. Because of the reduction in discharges, these initiatives may not show a reduction in 30 day readmits as a percent of discharges but would better reflect this changes by looking at a population based measure of re-admissions.

Some reference posts on the program are noted below:

  • http://www.medicaringcommunities.org/medicaring-blog-cms-cctp-metrics-have-seious-flaws/
  • http://medicaring.org/2014/12/16/protecting-hospitals/
  • http://www.n4a.org/blog_home.asp?display=16

Join us as we discuss Sun Health and their innovative approach to Senior Health, Care Transitions and the CCTP program.