Health plans, providers, and systems face a familiar challenge in today’s healthcare landscape. They manage financial risks once a patient is discharged into the post-acute ecosystem. The post-acute ecosystem is an extension of their initial inpatient care and those that patients come into contact with directly impact the outcomes of their care and well-being. Those outcomes are not limited to quality and efficiency but include provider reputation, health plan performance and reputation, and overall bottom line.
In our “post-pandemic world,” we notice greater collaboration among health plans, providers, and health systems. The collaborations evolve into partnerships with a high impact on provider experience and patient care. Partnerships with post-acute care providers have demonstrated an ability to reduce patient readmissions and complications, which helps decrease the overall cost of a care episode while increasing positive quality outcomes. Ultimately, partnerships with high-performing post-acute providers are essential, but how exactly do you “partner” with post-acute providers?
Identifying the right players in the post-acute ecosystem
A part of building your robust and quality network of post-acute providers is identifying the best providers for high-quality patient care. Identifying the right providers for your patients or members requires you to understand your local market by having experts – those with experience at various levels of post-acute care – on your side. An ideal post-acute provider is someone who operates efficiently using modern care techniques and technologies. An excellent post-acute provider sees the value and opportunity to use innovative technologies to increase efficiencies and streamline workflows. You can partner with small facilities and large chains to develop a plan of attack. You and your organization must establish a strong network that understands the challenges of post-acute care, especially in a post-pandemic world, and is eager to collaborate to develop achievable metrics.
Achieving the highest outcomes through accountability and streamlined processes
After identifying the best providers for your post-acute care setting, it is essential to define performance metrics or goals to maintain accountability and establish streamlined processes. Streamlined performance expectations should be shown for your providers through a focused model. The focused model reminds providers to view patients as people and to set personalized goals based on their care resulting in an intentional clinical approach. Partnering with facilities with access to real-time insights to streamline processes for utilization management ensures greater success for all partners and enhanced quality of care for your patients and members.
Using data as a performance metric
With the right providers, streamlined processes, and accountability, measuring your success with the available data is essential. The data tells the story of your patients and members and their journey through the acute and post-acute care ecosystem. Using data as a performance metric is paramount to successful outcomes in patient care. The transparency the data allows is vital to successful results and the ability to make future improvements in post-acute care. The availability and use of dynamic data will foster ongoing collaboration and prevent silos. Those within the landscape should agree on performance measurement and be able to establish an ongoing process for improvement and closed-loop feedback (verified performance reviews, etc.).
Using interconnected communication strategies
Interconnected communication strategies are another key to your successful partnership with post-acute providers. As a payer or health system, you can communicate using innovative EMR software. The capabilities of the EMR software provide greater interoperability between PAC providers and payers, allowing transparency across the continuum of care and real-time reporting. This interoperability is critical for easing the transition of care, creating more seamless processes for patients, and savings on operational expenses. Enhanced communication leads to more engagement between your patients, their families, and care teams.
Although you and your organization may be facing familiar challenges and uncertain how to chart the path forward and partner with PAC providers effectively, we hope our webinar provided four key strategies to start the discussions on how you foster greater collaboration and improve outcomes.