Value-based transformation will continue

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Brian Ellsworth
Brian Ellsworth

There is little doubt that 2017 will be a tumultuous year for post-acute care providers, as organizations continue to implement major changes while adapting to new leadership in Washington.

There is a revolution happening in post-acute care that may be too powerful to stop. Dramatic, value-based changes have been implemented in healthcare communities large and small across the United States. The goals are something we can all agree on: Improving quality and lowering costs.

As many of us know, upending payment and service models is no small feat, especially in the regulated world of post-acute care. In many markets, the rapid change has been driven by the pressure of new payment models and the commitment of organizations to improve patient outcomes while holding down costs.

There is strong reason to believe the momentum for value-based payment will continue. In fact, the shift from rewarding volume-to-value through Alternative Payment Models (APMs), such as bundling and accountable care organizations (ACOs), is likely to become more pronounced as payment models grow and evolve. All signs show that the Medicare program is on track to meet its goal that 50 percent of the fee-for-service payments be made through APMs by the end of 2018.

While the 2016 election has created uncertainty about healthcare policy, ongoing budget pressures and the need for “advanced” alternative payment options under the newly implemented physician payment system, will create continued impetus to move forward with APMs.

Those providers diving in to the deep end of the risk-taking pool, through directly taking risk under bundled payments or seeking gainsharing opportunities with other at-risk entities, will learn the quickest how to implement effective care redesign and survive in these swirling currents.

Healthcare leaders and executives can – and must – learn from each other in this time of immense change.

In late February, the Health Dimensions Group National Summit will bring together leaders who have successfully taken on the risks associated with value-based transformation. The summit will be an excellent opportunity to share best practices and prepare for the future.

At one session, provider organizations will share how they owned the risk associated with this seismic shift in health care. Presenters will share their experience in creating a physician-led Pioneer Accountable Care Organization  that is combined with a Medicare Advantage Plan. The panel also includes experts from a regional post-acute system directly taking risk under the Model 3 (post-acute initiated) Bundled Payments for Care Improvement (BPCI) initiative.

These healthcare leaders will share the precise steps that organizations took to undergo the value-based transformation. Together, we will also discuss shared challenges and successes and get a glimpse into the future of post-acute care.

Our summit takes place February 27 through March 1, 2017, at the Rancho Bernardo Inn in San Diego, California. At the event, HDG executive leadership and consultants, as well as leaders in the industry, will present on a variety of topics related to today's healthcare challenges. The three-day even features keynote speakers Chris Van Gorder and Nicholas Webb.

The full agenda, speakers list, and registration are available at the Summit website: Registration for the conference is available online through February 17, 2017.

Healthcare executives are welcome to join the conversation about the future of value-based care – as well as many other conversations about the future of healthcare – at the HDG National Summit. I hope to see you there.

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