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Michigan Blues' value-based payments save $1.4B in 10 years


Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan has saved $1.4 billion in health expenses over the last 10 years with its comprehensive value-based payment program that serves almost 2 million members. It also has improved clinical quality, efficiency and health outcomes, Blue Cross said in a statement.

The Value Partnerships incorporate several different programs, including the nation's largest patient-centered medical home, 22 collaborative quality initiatives and value-based payment initiatives with hospitals and providers. In 2013 alone, Blue Cross and five of its contracted health systems shared $50 million in total savings, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.

"We are a national leader in advancing healthcare quality and developing a high-performing, value-based, cost-effective healthcare system," Blue Cross CEO Daniel Loepp said in the statement. "And we have achieved success through collaboration, which isn't easy."

Blue Cross specifically set out to establish collaborative partnerships with the 19,000 physicians and 75 hospitals participating in its Value Partnership program. That's because "providers help formulate the initiatives, determine what quality areas need to be improved and manage their progress over time," Blue Cross Senior Vice President of Value Partnerships David Share told FierceHealthPayer in an email.

"The program has succeeded because it is a true collaboration. From the beginning, we worked together with providers to structure the program and the initiatives," Share added. "Physicians and other providers gave input, and together we created a structure for a program that would create a high functioning healthcare system."

Looking forward, Blue Cross plans to continue building its patient-centered medical home program and developing providers' care management capabilities to help coordinate care for members with chronic conditions, Share told FierceHealthPayer.

"Our largest focus is on developing organized systems of care, which is what we call our efforts to manage health populations through networks of care providers across health settings," Share added. "We believe this is where true transformation of healthcare happens--when providers across health settings work together to coordinate the care of a shared group of patients and are reimbursed based on the value or outcomes achieved."

To learn more:
- here's the Blue Cross statement

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