Maine Government News
Maine Is One of Six States to Receive Major Healthcare Innovation Award
February 22, 2013
$33 million federal grant will help transform healthcare in Maine
AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage learned Thursday that Maine will receive a $33 million three-year grant that will test whether new payment and service models will produce superior results and lower costs.
The grant supports Governor LePage's vision of an innovative healthcare system that is more transparent, uses data to guide decision-making, reforms payment and assists patients in managing their health. The effort, called the Maine Innovation Model, could result in more than $1 billion in overall savings over a three-year period.
Maine has been recognized as a leader in healthcare reform, with several innovative programs and projects under way involving healthcare providers, employers, insurers, unions and consumers. This clearly had an impact on the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation awarding Maine one of six State Innovations Model testing grants.
The Maine Innovation Model will strengthen efforts already underway by aligning MaineCare, Medicare and commercial insurer payments and systems to achieve and sustain lower healthcare costs across the State. MaineCare is the State's Medicaid program. "Providers will know what to expect in terms of payments and will have clear guidance on the data they must report so they can focus their energy on transforming care for their patients," said Maine DHHS Commissioner Mary Mayhew. "As a result of collecting consistent information, patients can compare different health care providers in terms of cost and quality and find practices that best fit their needs, regardless of how the bill is being paid." Mayhew said that resources will be available through the grant to assist patients in managing their own health conditions, including help to navigate the path to care from a peer who has experienced his/her health condition.
Data generated will be publicly reported, reinforcing the commitment to transparency, Mayhew said.
The Maine Health Management Coalition (MHMC) is the State’s primary partner in implementing this grant. MHMC is made up of more than 60 employers who represent 200,000 employees and dependents. It is a purchaser-led collaborative representing employers, providers, payers and consumers. MHMC has been active in many of the programs under way that are driving healthcare improvement and payment reform in Maine.
Additional partners include HealthInfoNet, the state’s Health Information Exchange and Maine Quality Counts (MQC), an independent alliance working to transform health and healthcare by leading, collaborating and aligning improvement efforts that support patient-centered, coordinated systems of care and the resources needed to support them.
"This grant will help Maine's MaineCare program build on the experience and success of the MHMC's work in quality improvement, consumer education, value-based insurance design, transparency and payment reform, as well as the excellent work of others in Maine to improve healthcare for an important segment of Maine’s population," said Elizabeth Mitchell, CEO of the Maine Health Management Coalition.
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