Monday, February 15, 2010

Building A Path To Integrated-Care Payment Systems – Health Affairs Blog

by Chris Fleming

With health reform currently in limbo, one of the few areas that command bipartisan support is reforming provider payments to promote integrated-care delivery models such as accountable care organizations, episode-based payments, and medical homes, Paul Ginsburg said as he introduced a February 8 panel on this subject at the National Health Policy Conference. As a result, even if Congress does not pass a comprehensive reform bill, payment reforms could still be enacted, for example as part of a Medicare bill blocking currently mandated physician payment cuts, said Ginsburg, the president and CEO of the Center for Studying Health System Change.

The problem, Ginsburg said, is that “we’re not ready yet … development is needed, piloting is needed, a process to go from piloting to implementation is need.” Ginsburg’s panel therefore addressed the issue of how we get from where we are now to where we would like to be, with an emphasis on three questions: 1) What piloting and development activities are needed?; 2) What kind of governance mechanisms at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services could best move this process forward?; and 3) How can private insurers participate in developing new models of payment reform?
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