Former HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt shares guidelines for accountable care success

The Accountable Care Learning Collaborative, which Leavitt co-chairs with former CMS Administrator Mark McClellan, published a framework for sharing best practices and care delivery competencies.
By Gus Venditto
11:24 AM
Mike Leavitt accountable care

As healthcare providers chart their transition from fee-based services to value-based models, strategic planning can feel like a dive into uncharted waters. Initiatives like improved use of analytics and better record-sharing are clearly important. But it is not always clear how to set priorities, measure progress or identify gaps in the plan.

The Accountable Care Learning Collaborative (ACLC) hopes to fill this need with a set of guidelines that identifies the essential care delivery competencies and sets a framework for sharing best practices. 

A total of 210 specific competencies are included in the guidelines being published today. The core competencies are organized into seven domains: governance and culture, financial readiness, health IT, patient risk assessment, care coordination, quality and patient centeredness. Examples of the Health IT competencies include “identify data needed for priority programs and processes” and “create decision-support rules that assist with providing effective care.”

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“The transition from volume- to value-based payments is inevitable,” said Mike Leavitt, co-chairman of the ACLC. “While many providers are learning how to adapt to this new world, the vast majority don’t know how to proceed.” He wants the ACLC to provide a forum for collecting ideas and sharing them.

John Poelman, Executive Director, ACLC, said the guidelines were created by the current members to help healthcare decision-makers learn from each other’s successes. The next step is for all interested parties – members and non-members -- to come forward and collaborate.

ACLC has 70 members at present including leading associations (HIMSS, the American Medical Association, the American College of Cardiology), technology vendors (Cerner, IBM Watson, Medecision) and payers (Cigna, Aetna, Hannover Re). Provider member organizations include WellSpan Health, Dartmouth-Hitchcock, Providence and New York Presbyterian.

Poleman said the guidelines and subsequent publications are being made available to all. ACLC is encouraging non-members to provide feedback that the members will use to improve the quality of the materials as they are updated.

“The answer doesn’t lie in one organization that has cracked the code and figured it out,” Poelman said. “If everyone can share what they’ve learned, we have a structure to aggregate that information and share it.”

Membership will provide a “seat at the table” Poelman said. ACLC plans to publish white papers that will provide deeper dives into the topics identified in the competency framework.

Mike Leavitt and Mark McClellan are co-chairman of the ACLC. Leavitt served as the secretary of Health and Human Services from 2005 to 2009, leading the implementation of the Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Program. He was elected governor or Utah three times. McClellan is a physician and economist; he was an administrator at CMS, a commissioner at the Food and Drug Administration and senior director for healthcare policy at the White House.

Twitter: @GusVenditto
Email the writer: gus.venditto@himssmedia.com


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