posted on July 11, 2017 12:54
Ted Epperly, MD
Chairman of the Board – Idaho Healthcare Coalition
President and CEO – Family Medicine Residency of Idaho (FMRI), Boise
I want to start by thanking all the 111 practices and their teams that are part of our SHIP health care transformation efforts. Never has Idaho undertaken a project of this magnitude to help reshape and reengineer the delivery of care in our state.
Without you and your efforts, this project would not have launched nor moved forward. I know how much work and effort transformation takes as FMRI has four of our practices in the SHIP cohorts. This is not work for the faint of heart; it is the lynchpin to transforming the delivery side of healthcare to get primary care on solid ground and functioning well. Primary care is ground zero for getting these efforts headed in the right direction. If a patient has a usual source of care with someone they know and trust then that relationship has been found to improve their health, their healthcare experience, and lower cost. Our team-based model of the patient centered medical home should also help decrease provider burnout and return our collective joy in our practices.
We are now over the halfway mark on our shared four-year journey here in Idaho. We’ll be adding one more cohort of 55 practices bringing our total to 165. We at the Idaho Healthcare Coalition (IHC) and the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare are working hard to align all of Idaho’s commercial and public payers (Blue Cross, Regence Blue Shield, PacificSource, Select Health, Medicaid, and Medicare) with the PCMH model toward value-based payment. I’m happy to tell you that all of them are making progress. This is critically important! Without the payers being on board with these transformational efforts and aligning their new payment methodologies with the delivery transformation we will not have payment align with practice. With this alignment, we will have the financial underpinnings to drive further transformation and make it sustainable over time. Your ongoing efforts will help ensure that your practices are at the forefront of this work and are positioned to be valued by the changing payer market.
In closing, thank you again for your efforts. You are truly pioneers taming the wild and unruly changing healthcare landscape. For these efforts, your communities and patients will be healthier.