When thinking about success in managing capitated contracts, don’t underestimate the need for speed. That was one of my takeaways from the session, The Clinical Perspective On Managing Capitated Contracts, led by OPEN MINDS Senior Associate Sharon Hicks and Pamela Mattel, Chief Operating Officer at Acacia Network, last month at The 2017 OPEN MINDS Executive Leadership Retreat.
When managing capitated agreements, time is money, so to speak. As Ms. Hicks and Ms. Mattel explained at the institute, a critical piece of the puzzle when managing capitated contracts is immediate access to data and analytics. Having data in real-time gives management teams the tool they need to make immediate adjustments to services.
The question for executive teams is how to create management systems that permit metrics-based management – promptly. The presenters offered a few suggestions for making decisions on a timely basis:
Eliminate silos between finance, administration, and clinical operations. Executives, managers, and clinical professionals need to work cooperatively across the system – with cross system data to identify high-needs, high-risk consumers. Most importantly, financial, administrative, and clinical teams need to work together to develop action plans to intervene with these consumers. (For more, see The Performance Competency & Culture Gap In Non-Profit Management Teams and Is Your Culture Performance-Driven? Ask Yourself These Six Questions.)
Create clear, defined roles for team members. Executives should develop highly specific roles and responsibilities for all team members. Every one should share in a common understanding of contractual arrangements, program performance measures, and organizational objectives – and their role in achieving those goals. Also understanding the scope (and limitations) of each team member’s ability to act is critical to rapid response. (For more, see Building A Technology Infrastructure For Value-Based Care: Tech To Support Performance Management and Is Your Organization Data Reactive – Or Data Predictive?.)
Make root cause analysis a routine practice. Many executive teams are solution-oriented, so when a problem is put on the table, there is a rush to find a solution first – when there should be a rush to understand the problem. Root cause analysis keeps your organization moving forward by identifying the issue and making infrastructure changes that will manifest in a real solution. Acting quickly without purpose creates new challenges and ultimately hampers the ability to move forward. (For more, see Bring On The Data and Looking To Improve Your Organization’s Performance? A Strong Benchmarking Strategy Is The Key.)
Adopt rapid cycle change. This means fail fast. Take more time to identify the problem and then make the necessary changes within one week. This will enable executive teams to assess their success and either abort or continue their course of action. (For more, see 6 Management Best Practices For Sustainability In A Changing Market and Management ‘Musts’ For Surviving The Present Turbulence.)
Success in managing the variety of value-based reimbursement arrangements depends not only on accurate timely data and operating systems – but the ability for that operating system to act with speed. As Joel Barker of Future Edge said: “Speed is useful only if you are running in the right direction.”
For more on using technology for population management, join Joe Parks, M.D., Medical Director for the National Council for Behavioral Health, and Larry Seltzer, General Manager and Senior Director for CareManager at Netsmart, on November 1st at 2:00 p.m. (EST) for the webinar, Leveraging Technology to Support Your Population Health Management Strategy.