In a recent webinar held in February of 2016, McKesson and the Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA) highlighted the clinical and financial benefits of implementing a chronic care management program. Additionally, McKesson and HFMA surveyed webinar attendees and gained some key insights into why providers feel this should be a center of focus for them over the next year and what challenges they see coming down the line.

The webinar, hosted by Jeb Dunkelberger MSc, Executive Director of Accountable Care Services and Corporate Sponsorships with McKesson, and Richard Cassidy, M.D., an experienced value-based care leader and consultant, drew over 200 attendees, all interested in learning more about chronic care management program benefits. Mr. Dunkelberger began with an overview of the industry trends and how chronic conditions are impacting Medicare spending. The U.S Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has confirmed that by 2018, 50% of all Medicare payments will be tied to value-based care and quality initiatives, impressing upon providers to narrow their focus now on implementing step-by-step programs such as chronic care management to begin to prepare for those higher level goals. And while 50% of attendees indicated they already operate under value-based care contracts of some kind, less than half of those providers actually bill for CPT® 99490.

From there, the webinar outlined the program requirements to be able to bill for Medicare’s new chronic care management program under CPT® code 99490, as well as the intricacies and other challenges providers may face as they work to receive their compensation from the program.

The webinar clearly highlighted the benefits of implementing a chronic care management program – improved quality of care, generating additional revenue…and all while preparing for the value-based care journey payers are setting providers on. So why is there any hesitation from physicians to implement these programs? While attendees did indicate that patient co-pay, leadership strategic goals and other environmental factors do give them some concern, the major obstacle from their point of view is the cost of implementing new technology and hiring new staff to run a chronic care management program. This is an objection that should be met head on by the quality care champion at the organization.

In the final section of the webinar, Dr. Cassidy took the audience on a journey of a real-life example of one Accountable Care Organization (ACO) that was coordinating care at this centralized level of detail even before there was an actual CPT® code to do so. Hearing first hand from a physician on the importance of getting physicians to understand the benefits of these programs, starting with the assessment of whether an organization can do this in-house or if an outsourcing partner is needed. The main highlight of this part of the webinar is that the more the physician is engaged, the better engaged the patient will be and ultimately, the more successful the program will be in improving the patient’s health.

To connect with one of our chronic care management experts to discuss your value-based care strategies, email us at ccmservices@mckesson.com.

McKesson

About the author

McKesson Business Performance Services offers services and consulting to help hospitals, health systems, and physician practices improve business performance, boost margins and transition successfully to value-based care.