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Practice Transformation

RAND: Volume-based payments still dominate
Most physicians employed in group practices owned by health systems are paid primarily based on the volume of care they provide, according to findings published in JAMA Health Forum. In these practices, volume-based compensation was the most common type of base pay for more than 80% of primary care physicians and for more than 90% of specialists. “The results of this cross-sectional study suggest that PCPs and specialists despite receiving value-based reimbursement incentives from payers, the compensation of health system PCPs and specialists was dominated by volume-based incentives designed to maximize health systems revenue,” they conclude. (JAMA Health ForumRAND announcement)
In response: Value-based window dressing
In this AHealthcareZ video, Dr. Eric Bricker holds forth on the above RAND study that found that physician compensation was “dominated by volume-based incentives designed to maximize health systems revenue.” (YouTube)
The big honking problem: The cost of employer health plans
The pandemic may have disrupted other aspects of health care, “but it hasn’t changed the way hospitals, doctors, drug companies and other health care firms continue to charge employer health plans — and workers — whatever they want,” Axios reports. Annual per-person spending growth for workplace health insurance has exceeded the spending growth among Medicare and Medicaid patients in nine of the past 13 years. “The big honking problem is the prices that are being paid in the commercial sector,” Mark Miller, the former head of the MedPAC. (Axios)

Evidence & Innovation

Seniors aren’t using health, medicine apps
A University of Michigan/AARP survey of adults ages 50-80 finds only 44% have ever used an mHealth app, and only 28% are using one now. Those numbers are even lower for seniors who most need such apps: Only 14% of those living with diabetes are using an app to manage their medications, and just 28% are using an app to manage their blood sugar levels. Overall, those who reported excellent, very good or good health were more likely to use health apps than those in fair or poor health (29% vs 21%). Only 8% report ever using a medication app. (HealthLeaders MediaUniversity of Michigan)
More research supports team-based collaboration
ACO success requires providers to collaborate across the continuum of care, according to research published in Manufacturing & Service Operations Management. It found that an ACO with partners from all three care continuum stages—pre-acute, acute and post-acute—could improve patient experience quality by 5.3% and reduce the 30-day readmission rate by 2.9%. However, it’s a long-term investment: The per patient expense goes up 12% the first year. The research shows that health care is a system, not individual parts, explains lead author Aravind Chandrasekaran, professor of operations at Fisher College of Business. If you want good health care, it’s more than just having great doctors. It means excellence and collaboration across all three aspects of that continuum of care. (RevCycle IntelligenceManufacturing & Service Operations Managementannouncement)
Primary care’s power to push
Primary care providers appear to have a knack for convincing patients to exercise. A systematic review and meta-analysis with data from more than 16,000 patients suggest physical activity interventions delivered or prompted by health professionals in primary care was associated with a statistically significant increase in moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity by an average of 14 minutes per week. “Physical activity interventions delivered by health professionals in primary care settings appear effective in increasing participation in physical activity as measured by self-report and reducing weight in adults,” according to the researchers writing in The BMJ. (Endocrinology NetworkBMJ)

Policy Solutions

Information blocking: Most complaints about providers
HHS has received 274 claims of possible information blocking since April 5, 2021 — when the new information exchange regulations went into effect. According to ONC data released Monday, 211 of those claims (77%) are against health care providers. At the other end, only two are against health information networks/health information exchanges. (Health IT BuzzModern Healthcare)

In Case You Missed It!

The Right Drug Dose Now Act Introduced Feb. 28, 2022
Yesterday, the GTMRx Institute issued a letter of support for the Right Drug Dose Now Act. (See the press release from Congressman Swalwell here.)
GTMRx’s Precision Medicine Enablement via Advanced Diagnostics Workgroup invited congressional staff from the Personalized Medicine Caucus to present on draft PGx legislation underway on two occasions. The Personalized Medicine Caucus, co-chaired by Representatives Tom Emmer (R-MN) and Eric Swalwell (D-CA), engages members in a constructive dialogue about legislative and regulatory policies that can help realize the full potential of personalized medicine. The recommendations that came out of these discussions were put into our Letter to the Personalized Medicine Caucus Co-Chairs—Representatives Tom Emmer (R-MN) and Eric Swalwell (D-CA)—on the Right Drug Dose Now Act.
Some of the GTMRx recommendations to the Caucus included:
  • Incorporating comprehensive medication management definition and language.
  • Combining PGx testing with the CMM process of care.
  • Expanding implementation of EHR guidelines, education awareness campaigns, and reporting.
  • Clarifying the definition of adverse drug events.
New Podcast Episode: Jessica Lea, PharmD
Host Katherine H. Capps talks to Tria Health CEO, Jessica Lea. As a trained pharmacist, she brings 20 years of knowledge and expertise in managed care and pharmacy benefits and is an advocate for the pharmacists’ role in improving outcomes. Her background in academia and numerous pharmacy achievements continue to fuel her passion of providing patient-centered care that results in optimal health outcomes.
In the episode, she offers guidance to employers as health plan sponsors to develop a “Buy Right Strategy”—an educational outreach program to educate employers about a new process of care to ensure medication are safe, effective and appropriate for their employees.
A Comprehensive Overview of the Institute, It’s Vision, Mission and Leadership
The Get the Medications Right Institute is working to decrease misuse, overuse and underuse of medications and avoid waste by advancing comprehensive medication management to ensure appropriate and personalized use of medications and gene therapies. Learn more in this brochure.
Interested in supporting our work?
Please contact Jeff Hanson (e: jhanson@gtmr.org)
Join us to be part of meaningful change
Irma, like many others, struggles as a result of our current trial-and-error approach to medication. That is why we advocate for a new, comprehensive approach to medication use and prescribing. As a non-profit 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) organization, the GTMRx Institute and Foundation relies on funding from our supporting members. We ask that you consider becoming a Supporting Signing Member so we can continue to provide relevant, timely resources to get the medications right!
If you’re interested in supporting the Institute or Foundation at a higher level, please contact us. Your dollars will bring about meaningful change for people like Irma.

Become a Supporting Member Today

AmazonSmile is an easy way for 0.5% of your qualified purchases go to the GTMRx Foundation at no cost to you. And signing up is simple—go to smile.amazon.com and select “Get the Medications Right Foundation” as your charity of choice. If you prefer to directly donate instead, you can do so here.
Adding the foundation on AmazonSmile will help us continue to provide no cost educational webinars, issue briefs, weekly news briefs and promote the need for transformation of our current system of medication use through social media campaigns.
The GTMRx Institute is supported by our Founding Funders, Executive Members and Strategic Partners.
  See past issues of our weekly news brief here
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