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Health Reform Announcements -
July 2012

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Health Care Reform Task Force and Workgroup Information

The Minnesota Department of Health posts weekly updates of announcements related to the agency's health reform activities. These updates are also sent out via email to subscribers to Health Reform Announcements. Updates are sent each Thursday.

Weekly Update - July 27, 2012

Center for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) Innovation Center State Grant Planning Meeting
The Minnesota departments of health and human services are hosting a stakeholder meeting August 7, 8 -10 a.m. at the Wilder Foundation to discuss next steps for Minnesota in pursuing this funding opportunity. On June 27, a group of stakeholders brainstormed initial ideas for Minnesota’s potential directions for this initiative, before CMS released the announcement. Please RSVP to Camille.creamer@state.mn.us. If you have questions regarding the meeting, please contact Lauren Gilchrist at lauren.gilchrist@state.mn.us
Question period extended for Health Care Homes Evaluation RFP
The period for submission of questions regarding the RFP for the Health Care Homes Evaluation has been extended until 4 p.m., August 3, 2012. Submit questions in writing to health.healthcarehomes@state.mn.us. Answers will be published on the health care home website on Monday, August 6. Proposals are due by 4 p.m.August 13. To obtain a copy of the rfp visit the HCH website http://www.health.state.mn.us/healthreform/homes/education/index.html

Weekly Update - July 20, 2012

State insurance exchange contractor selected
Minnesota has selected Maximus, a Virginia-based company, to develop the technology to support the state’s health insurance exchange.  The exchange’s technology will include elements such as “eligibility determination, account administration, display of benefit plan costs and options, and health care provider information.”  The $41 million contract is excepted to run through 2014 and exchange’s technology will include elements such as eligibility determination, account administration, display of benefit plan costs and options, and health care provider information. Through the contract with Maximus, the exchange will be “a user friendly tool that will help more than 1.2 million Minnesotans choose the quality coverage they need at a price they can afford, ” said Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman.

Minnesota counties collaborate on human service delivery 
Five Minnesota counties have voted to explore the prospect of a regional human services organization. While other counties in the region voted not to join the collaborative effort, the five participating counties will continue to work to combine much of the counties’ human services work into a single regional unit. These counties will meet in the next month to determine how they will collaborate in the human service program delivery.

CMS unveils State Models Initiative project
The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently released information about its State Models Initiative, which is a $275 million competitive funding initiative for states to design and test multi-payer payment and health care delivery models. The Minnesota departments of health and human services are hosting a stakeholder meeting August 7, 8:30-10 a.m. at the Wilder Foundation to discuss next steps for Minnesota in pursuing this funding opportunity. On June 27, a group of stakeholders brainstormed initial ideas for Minnesota’s potential directions for this initiative, before CMS released the announcement. Please RSVP to Camille.creamer@state.mn.us. If you have questions regarding the meeting, please contact Lauren Gilchrist at lauren.gilchrist@state.mn.us

MDH requests proposals for health care home evaluation
The Minnesota Department of Health is requesting proposals for the comprehensive evaluation of the  Health Care Homes Initiative as authorized under Minnesota Statutes ยง256B.0752. Work is proposed to begin in September, 2012.  The award will cover a five year evaluation period. To obtain a copy of the RFP, contact Marcia Carlson at Marcia.carlson@state.mn.us  or visit http://www.health.state.mn.us/healthreform/homes/education/index.html. All questions regarding the RFP must be received prior to July 24 at 4 pm, Central Time.  A responders conference call will be scheduled on July 25. To register for the call or submit questions regarding the RFP,  email health.heatlhcarehomes@state.mn.us. Proposals must be received no later than 4:00 p.m., Central Time, August 13, 2012.

Report takes a look at Minnesota's ACA efforts
The Urban Institute recently issued a report about Minnesota's implementation of the Affordable Care Act as part of an ongoing effort to track the progress of health reform across the country.

Minnesota sees smallest year-to-year health care cost increase in more than a decade
Total health care spending in Minnesota increased 2.2 percent to $37.7 billion in 2010, which was the slowest growth rate observed since 1997, according to a report released Tuesday by the Health Economics Program at the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH).

The Access work group of the Health Care Reform Task Force will be meeting from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. on Monday, July 23rd.  The public is encouraged to attend the meeting and provide input on criteria for benefits for the population at 138 โ€“ 205% Federal Poverty Level, as well as other potential coverage criteria such as sustainability, churn, coverage for families with mixed private/public coverage.

Weekly Update - July 13, 2012

Governor Dayton reaffirms Minnesota’s commitment to Minnesota-made health insurance exchange
This week, Governor Mark Dayton reaffirmed Minnesota’s commitment to designing and developing a state-based health insurance exchange for Minnesota. Governor Dayton declared his commitment to that effort in a letter to HHS Secretary Sebelius (PDF: 2.46MB/2 pages). In addition, the Minnesota Health Insurance Exchange Outreach, Communications and Marketing Work Group also recently posted some preliminary Minnesota market research presented July 10.

Health Care Reform Task Force discusses access and work force issues
The Health Care Reform Task Force approved a set of working recommendations for improving Minnesota's health care workforce at its meeting July 12. The presentations and working recommendations are available under meeting materials.

Request for information on geographic rating areas
The Minnesota departments of Commerce and Health request information related to the establishment of geographic rating areas for individual and small group health plans. Please click the link below for more information.Comments must be received by 5:00 pm Central Time on Wednesday, July 25. For further details on this opportunity, go to http://mn.gov/health-reform/images/RFI_Geographic_Rating_Areas.pdf.

Health Insurance Exchange issues RFP for health plan quality rating and enrollee satisfaction survey system development
On Monday, July 9, the Minnesota Department of Commerce requested proposals from highly qualified respondents to develop a Health Benefit Exchange quality rating system and an enrollee satisfaction survey system for insurers and qualified health plans (QHPs). The Exchange is required to implement these components under the Federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA).  The contractor must work collaboratively with Commerce, other state agencies, and additional stakeholder groups throughout the development of the methodology. Work is proposed to start after September 3, 2012. Responses to this solicitation are due no later than 4 p.m., August 6, 2012. To receive the Request for Proposal, a written request (by email) is required to Stephanie Krieg at Stephanie.Krieg@state.mn.us

CMS gives Essentia Health ACO nod
This week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced Essentia Health, along with 88 other organizations, to a list of accountable care organizations (ACOs). ACOs that succeed in reducing the rate of growth in the cost of care while continuing to provide high quality care will share the savings with Medicare.  Located in Duluth, Essentia Health is comprised of a combination of ACO group practices, critical access hospitals, and a rural health clinic, with 1,404 physicians. The new ACO will serve Medicare beneficiaries in Minnesota, North Dakota, and Wisconsin. The complete list of recently approved ACOs is available online.

MDH certifies new clinics as Health Care Homes
The Minnesota Department of Health has certified 2 new clinics as health care homes. There are now 172 certified health care homes in Minnesota. The newly certified clinics are AALFA Family Clinic, White Bear Lake, and Sanford Health, Mahnomen. These clinics and providers have met the standards to become certified as Health Care Homes in the State of Minnesota. For more information, or to find a health care home near you, go to: http://www.health.state.mn.us/healthreform/homes/index.html

New 2012 Minnesota e-Health Connectivity Grant Program for HIE
The 2012 Minnesota e-Health Connectivity Grant Program for Health Information Exchange (HIE) will provide grant funding to expand community-based collaborative HIE efforts. Grant awards range up to $25,000 per HIE partner site or $10,000 per pharmacy. Grant applications will be reviewed and evaluated on a first come, first serve basis. Visit the Minnesota e- Health Connectivity Grant for Health Information Exchange webpage for more information.

Weekly Update - July 6, 2012

Clinics urged to start patient experience measure process by July 16
Physician clinics that are required to report the patient experience of care measure under the Statewide Quality Reporting and Measurement System (SQRMS) are urged to contract with a CMS-approved survey vendor and complete the pre-survey process with MN Community Measurement (MNCM) by July 16. Physician clinics are reminded to consult MNCM’s Patient Experience of Care Data Collection Guide (PDF: 1 MB/48 pages) which delineates the key steps and timeline of the patient experience of care survey process. This guide can be downloaded from MNCM’s corporate website at http://mncm.org/site/?page=resources (scroll down the page), or from MNCM’s data portal under the “Resources” tab. If after reviewing these resources, you find you still have unanswered questions, please submit your questions to MNCM at surveysupport@mncm.org


CMS awards challenge grants
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently awarded six Minnesota organizations Health Care Innovation Awards for proposing “the most compelling new ideas to deliver better health, improved care, and lower costs to people enrolled in Medicare, Medicaid, and Children’s Health Insurance Program.” The winners โ€“ Courage Center’s Camp Courage, The Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement, Mayo Clinic, The National Council of YMCA of the USA, Sanford Health, and Trustees of Dartmouth College โ€“ collectively received $86 million to implement their ideas in Minnesota and other states.  Over three years, these six projects are projected to save over $190 million in Minnesota and elsewhere. 

Provider Peer Grouping Conference Call July 9
The Minnesota Department of Health holds monthly conference calls to share information about the provider peer grouping initiative on the second Monday of each month from 7:30 a.m. to 8:15 a.m. The next call-in session is scheduled for Monday, July 9.
Date: Monday, July 9, 2011
Time: 7:30 a.m.
Phone number: 1-888-742-5095
Participant code: 9247084406

 

Updated Friday, 12-Jul-2013 16:09:16 CDT