Clinical informatics to help shift to value-based care

In Wichita, Kan., a day for planning how to align the workflows and the technology to put the patient at the center
By Gus Venditto
02:55 PM
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The signs coming out of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Serivces are crystal clear: New policies will continue to push hospitals toward value-based care – whether they're ready or not.

"People recognize that times are changing," says Mat Kendall. "The reality is that CMS is moving aggressively to change incentives so there are penalties for readmissions and those penalties can be significant."

Kendall, an executive vice president for provider networks with Aledade, is working with independent primary care providers to help transform the health IT infrastructure with a goal of decreasing their total cost of care.

The central challenge is "figuring out how to align the workflows and the technology to put the patient at the center."

It sounds simple, but of course the existing systems are complex. Every change has the potential for unforeseen complications.

To help other hospitals, Kendall is taking part in the March 6 HIMSS Clinical Informatics Institute educational program, being held in Wichita, Kan.

The day will bring together a number of health IT experts who will share their experiences, with an emphasis on solving the challenges around interoperability and achieving the goals for accountable care.

One of the topics will be telehealth, which is filling a need in a state where, in Kendall's words, "you can put 800 miles on a car getting between practices."

Kendall's background is in public health. He was executive director of the Indian Health Center of Santa Clara Valley, Calif., a federally qualified health center that provided comprehensive services including medical, dental, mental health and substance abuse prevention for low-income individuals.

From there, he moved across the country to New York City, where he became the director of operations for New York City's Primary Care Information Project. Among his accomplishments: coordinating the implementation of EHR systems by more than 1,000 providers in one year.

After that, he worked with Aledade CEO Farzad Mostashari, MD, in the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, serving as director of the Office of Provider Adoption Support. There, he was responsible for the regional extension center program that helped 143,000 providers get to meaningful use of their electronic health records.

Kendall joined Mostashari to start Aledade, a new venture backed by Venrock, aiming to help independent primary care providers form accountable care organizations.

Other speakers at the Clinical Informatics Institute include HIMSS Senior Director of Healthcare Information Systems Mary Griskewicz; Kenneth Mishler, president and CEO of the Kansas Foundation for Medical Care; and Ryan Spaulding, director of the Center for Telemedicine and Telehealth at KUMC.