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The SIM Program Management Office is seeking consulting services to support the implementation of a Value Based Insurance Design (VBID) Consortium to promote the statewide adoption of VBID. Services include, but are not limited to, identifying and engaging the necessary stakeholders, establishing and facilitating an employer-led consortium with core interest sub-groups, facilitating annual learning collaborative, assessing current VBID programs and designing model VBID programs. The deadline for proposals is 3 p.m. on July 31, 2015. Click here to access the request for proposals.

{SGR Repeal} On April 16, 2015 President Obama signed legislation that repeals the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR), and changes the way Medicare pays doctors.

As reported by the Washington Post, the president announced that the legislation gives assurances to doctors about their payments and “it also improves it because it starts encouraging payments based on quality, not the number of tests that are provided or the number of procedures that are applied but whether or not people actually start feeling better. It encourages us to continue to make the system better without denying service.”
This month, Cigna reported that its value-based payment reform in Connecticut has led to improved quality and reduced cost among its participating medical groups. Cigna’s value-based payment program, called Cigna Collaborative Care, rewards a medical group if it meets targets for improving quality and reducing costs, much like the SIM-funded value-based payment initiative currently being designed (Medicaid Quality Improvement & Shared Savings Program). Read Cigna’s announcement here.
A SIM-funded physician survey conducted by UConn Health and Yale School of Health asked more than 1,000 physicians across Connecticut questions ranging from their job satisfaction to their thoughts about patient-centered medical homes. The survey was released to the Healthcare Innovation Steering Committee on April 9, 2015.
Connecticut to Participate in the Health Care Payment Learning and Action Network
On March 25th the Health Care Payment Learning and Action Network was launched with the announcement made by President Barack Obama and HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell at its first meeting at the White House. This initiative is intended to accelerate the transformation of the nation’s health care delivery system to one that achieves better care, smarter spending, and healthier people, by supporting the adoption of alternative payment models. The network is broad, with state representatives, employers, health plans, providers, business leaders and consumers in attendance. Mark Schaefer, Director of Healthcare Innovation, represented Connecticut at the launch.
Hear President Obama speak about the network launch by clicking the image below.
To learn more about the HCPLAN and read other related healthcare innovation news, please click here.
SIM States Gather for National Conference
On April 21-23, the National Governors Association convened all SIM states, currently more than half of all states. A panel of Federal leaders discussed the current momentum to move away from fee-for-service and into value-based payment. Vikki Wachino, of the Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services, reinforced that "alignment is critically important" among Medicare, Medicaid, state employee plans, and commercial payers with an "all oars in the water approach." However, alignment does not mean uniformity and states need to develop their vision of a desired end goal and work with CMS to get there. She urged participants to think "What are you doing at the end of the day for consumers?"
Sessions and panel discussions covered the topics of population health, behavioral health integration, health IT, and barriers and strengths of other SIM states. To learn more about the conference and read other related news, please click here.
SIM Model Test Grant Awarded
The State of Connecticut was one of 11 states selected to receive State Innovation Model Test Grant Awards. Connecticut will receive up to $45 million to implement a number of initiatives designed to improve population health, strengthen primary care, promote value-based payment and insurance design, and obtain multi-payer alignment on quality, health equity, and care experience measures. Click here to read the news release from Governor Malloy and Lt. Governor Wyman. You can view award materials here.
Hear what Steering Committee member and Connecticut Health Foundation President Patricia Baker has to say about what this award will mean for the State of Connecticut: