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ACA $840M Initiative Focused on Health Outcomes

Oct 23, 2014

A new initiative will change the way your doctor and health care providers delivery their services to you. Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell announced an initiative that will fund successful applicants who work directly with medical providers to rethink and redesign their practices, moving from systems driven by quantity of care to ones focused on patients’ health outcomes, and coordinated health care systems. These applicants could include group practices, health care systems, medical provider associations and others.

This effort will help clinicians develop strategies to share, adapt and further improve the quality of care they provide, while holding down costs. Strategies could include:

  • Giving doctors better access to patient information, such as information on prescription drug use to help patients take their medications properly;
  • Expanding the number of ways patients are able communicate with the team of clinicians taking care of them;
  • Improving the coordination of patient care by primary care providers, specialists, and the broader medical community; and
  • Using electronic health records on a daily basis to examine data on quality and efficiency.

“The administration is partnering with clinicians to find better ways to deliver care, pay providers and distribute information to improve the quality of care we receive and spend our nation’s dollars more wisely,” said Secretary Burwell.  “We all have a stake in achieving these goals and delivering for patients, providers and taxpayers alike.”

Through the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative, HHS will invest $840 million over the next four years to support 150,000 clinicians. With a combination of incentives, tools, and information, the initiative will encourage doctors to team with their peers and others to move from volume-driven systems to value-based, patient-centered, and coordinated health care services. Successful applicants will demonstrate the ability to achieve progress toward measurable goals, such as improving clinical outcomes, reducing unnecessary testing, achieving cost savings and avoiding unnecessary hospitalizations. 

The initiative is one part of a strategy advanced by the Affordable Care Act to strengthen the quality of patient care and spend health care dollars more wisely. For example, the Affordable Care Act has helped reduce hospital readmissions in Medicare by nearly 10 percent between 2007 and 2013 – translating into 150,000 fewer readmissions – and quality improvements have resulted in saving 15,000 lives and $4 billion in health spending during 2011 and 2012.

HHS encourages all interested clinicians to participate in this initiative. For more information on the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative, please visit: http://innovation.cms.gov/initiatives/Transforming-Clinical-Practices/

Source: US Health & Human Services, News Release  - October 23, 2014 

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