For those of our Hospice colleagues who follow government policy, you may be wondering what’s going on in the evolving landscape of hospice value-based care modeling. I’m thinking specifically of the Primary Care First Serious Illness Population and direct contracting models. Truth be told, it feels like the conversation’s gone a bit cold. That said, if I put my ear to the ground, there’s a lot of chatter that suggests quite the contrary.
In a podcast for the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) released earlier this week, NHPCO’s Annie Acs, Director of Health Policy & Innovation, and Lori Bishop, Vice President of Palliative and Advanced Care, made a cogent argument for why hospice value-based care modeling remains a hot topic. Annie and Lori talked about recent models and updates from the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI). They also address developments in direct contracting and in Primary Care First and the Serious Illness Population model.
Similarly, Jim Parker in his article titled CMMI Chief Fowler: Value-Based Care at a Crossroads, argues that the conversation about moving hospice to value-based care is very much alive and well. He proposes that the recent change in government administration, particularly the appointment of a new director to the CMMI, has necessitated a review and re-evaluation of value-based care models in line with the Biden administration’s priorities. The article gives an interesting summary of the challenges involved in implementing these models and some thoughts as to their future.
All things considered, given the effort and investment that has gone into developing hospice value-based modelling and the policy drive to develop value-based care across the healthcare sector more generally, I suspect the quiet we hear is simply a temporary lull in the usual noise rather than any significant pause in the conversation. No doubt the conversation about hospice value-based modelling will be heating up again in the near future.