Celebrating the SIM community and its early successes

The Colorado State Innovation Model team wishes you and your care team a very happy holiday season. We are thankful for your efforts to integrate behavioral health and primary care and appreciate all of the time and energy this takes. As we prepare for 2017, we are proud of the small but powerful community that SIM has built and look forward to sharing your successes—small and large—through our social channels, website and the industry publications to which we contribute.

In this, our second newsletter to our SIM practices, we are debuting our practice transformation series that focuses practice facilitators and the work they do to help SIM practices assess and improve processes to integrate care. We will be publishing additional articles on the SIM website so please check it often for updates.

The SIM team is compiling data from the first cohort and releasing actionable information to improve care delivery. Read the first article about depression screening and stay tuned for additional information. We hope you will tell us how you’re using SIM data to change processes in your practice. Email us with details. 

We would also like to draw your attention to the video series about the SIM initiative, and encourage you to use it in your publications, websites and social channels to highlight the work you are doing to deliver whole-person care. Ask us how you can embed a link on your website. 

The SIM team recognizes the value of community, which is one reason we joined a new coalition that will provide all the information you’ll need about the Quality Payment Program (QPP). The Colorado QPP Coalition was formed to help educate and inform practices about the QPP, which was introduced in the final rule for the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act, and promises to reward the delivery of high-quality patient care.

Our goal is to equip SIM practices with the information and infrastructure they need to successfully test value-based reimbursement models, so we will be actively involved in researching resources and educational opportunities that suit your needs. 
As the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) explains on the QPP website, the new program “improves Medicare by helping you focus on care quality and the one thing that matters most — making patients healthier.”

Payment changes
Whether you participate in the QPP or other alternative payment models through private payers, SIM helps prepare your practice for success. We will be sharing updates about the Colorado QPP Coalition, which comprises local associations and organizations that have committed to create a central repository for education that helps providers prepare for value-based payment models, and includes:

•    The Colorado Academy of Family Practitioners
•    The Colorado Community Health Network
•    The Colorado Health Extension System
•    The Colorado Medical Society
•    The Colorado State Innovation Model 
•    Telligen

Regardless of political changes in Washington, D.C., the industrywide effort to shift from volume- to value-based healthcare is moving forward, which is why the Colorado QPP Coalition is identifying resources that are customized for your needs. It is important to remember that MACRA passed with bipartisan support, which reinforces the longevity of programs, such as the QPP, that are designed to help providers focus on patient care. 

“The QPP is not just a change in payment,” said Mark Levine, MD, FACP, chief medical officer, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Denver, who participated in the first meeting of the Colorado QPP Coalition. “It is intended to align everyone in a common vision for the future of healthcare in America.” 

The Colorado QPP Coalition plans to launch its website in January, and SIM will keep you apprised of news and updates. We hope you will help inform our efforts with suggestions about the type of information you would like to see published on this website, the resources that would be of most help to you and the people from whom you’d like to hear. Email SIM with suggestions.