Health Care and Nonprofits

Priority Health joins Michigan Primary Care Transformation project

July 1, 2013
| By Pete Daly |
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Priority Health has joined the Michigan Primary Care Transformation project, which is aimed at reforming primary care payment models and expanding the capabilities of patient-centered medical homes throughout the state.

“For years, primary care practices have asked for incentive programs and insurers to be aligned,” said Burt VanderLaan, medical director for Priority Health. “Participating in the Michigan project allows us to further explore how physicians, insurers and government programs can work together to transform the delivery of health care. We see strong alignment between the MiPCT project goals and the work Priority Health has already done to support primary care and ensure the best health care outcomes for patients.”

Priority Health officially joins the MiPCT project July 1.

MiPCT is a three-year project aimed at improving health in the state, making health care more affordable and enhancing the patient experience. It is the largest PCMH project in the nation with 38 physician/physician-hospital organizations representing nearly 400 primary care practices and 1,800 primary care physicians.

Priority Health said it already has extensive experience with physician quality and incentive programs to further support primary care in Michigan and improve health care coordination and management, practice transformation and performance outcomes.

Through its Partners in Performance program, Priority Health rewards quality care by primary care physicians, and has paid $200 million over and above standard payment since the program launched in 1996.

“The addition of Priority Health to the MiPCT project is an important step forward, and we’re eager to work in partnership with them to improve health care delivery for the citizens of Michigan,” said James Haveman, director of the Michigan Department of Community Health. “True transformation can occur only when health insurers, providers and hospitals all work together to deliver a common model of care, and Priority Health’s entry into MiPCT will take us another step closer to achieving that goal.”

The MiPCT project is working to align incentives for primary care physicians, resulting in improved management of chronic conditions. That should reduce emergency department visits for routine care that could be supported in a doctor’s office, and reduce hospital readmissions.

The project also addresses end-of-life issues through consistent training of primary care physicians in advanced directives and palliative care. It also aims to ensure that all participating physician organizations have common training, expectations and reporting mechanisms.

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