Healthcentric Advisors Awarded $53.4 Million Federal Contract

Will serve as the Medicare Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization for all six New England States

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (July 25, 2014) — The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently awarded a $53.4 million Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO) contract to Healthcentric Advisors, the incumbent Rhode Island Quality Improvement Organization (QIO).

The new QIN-QIO contracts, awarded to 14 organizations across the United States, represent a revitalization of CMS’s long outstanding Medicare QIO work. In order to successfully execute the contract initiatives, Healthcentric Advisors, as the prime contractor for this work, has engaged Qualidigm, the incumbent QIO for Connecticut, to serve as subcontractor. Together, Healthcentric Advisors and Qualidigm will administer the QIN-QIO contract for the six New England states: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont. The contract period begins on August 1, 2014 and continues through July 31, 2019.

The new QIN-QIO contract awards represent the second phase of the federal government’s restructuring of the national QIO program, the largest federal program dedicated to health care quality improvement. The previous QIO body of work will be split into two separate contract structures. Medical case review and appeals will now be performed by two Beneficiary Family Centered Care QIOs (BFCC-QIO). Quality improvement and technical assistance will now be performed by 14 QIN-QIOs.

QIN-QIO contract awardees are charged by CMS to improve the quality, effectiveness and value of health care delivered to Medicare beneficiaries and all consumers through the provision of education, technical assistance, data analytics and the sharing of best practices to providers in various settings. Under this contract QIN-QIOs will also be working to engage and activate patients in their own care.

“This award, on the part of CMS, acknowledges the positive role Healthcentric Advisors has played in improving the quality and safety of health care in Rhode Island. Again, our state will continue to serve as a national model for healthcare transformation initiatives,” said John Keimig, president and CEO of Healthcentric Advisors.

He also noted, “Healthcentric Advisors and Qualidigm have a long history of working successfully with hospitals, nursing homes, physicians, and other providers and stakeholders in our respective states. Our two organizations look forward to bringing that same spirit of partnership and collaboration to the entire New England region. We are eager to support and assist providers in all settings, share knowledge and best practices, and accelerate improvements in health care throughout the six-state region.”

While overseeing work for the entire six-state region, Healthcentric Advisors will focus its efforts in Maine, Massachusetts and Rhode Island and Qualidigm in Connecticut, New Hampshire and Vermont. Gail Patry, RN, Chief Program Officer at Healthcentric Advisors will serve as the operations director of the six state QIN-QIO contract and principal liaison with CMS.

Healthcentric Advisors and Qualidigm will work across New England on strategic initiatives such as reducing health care associated infections, reducing readmissions and medication errors, working with nursing homes to improve care for residents, supporting clinical practices in using interoperable health information technology to coordinate care, promoting prevention activities, reducing cardiac disease and diabetes, reducing health care disparities and improving patient and family engagement. The partnership will also provide technical assistance for improvement in CMS value based purchasing programs, including the physician value-based modifier program.

For media inquiries contact Alex Bronk by phone (401-528-3273) or email (abronk@HealthcentricAdvisors.org).

About Healthcentric Advisors

Healthcentric Advisors is a non-profit health care quality improvement agency providing consulting, research and education services. Located in Providence, RI with offices in Woburn, MA and Brunswick, ME and a staff of approximately 50 physicians, nurses, educators, analysts and other professionals, Healthcentric Advisors is a sought-after partner to national and local government agencies, foundations, insurers, health care providers, stakeholders and educational institutions on health care quality improvement initiatives.

About the New England QIN-QIO

The New England QIN-QIO, administered by Healthcentric Advisors in partnership with Qualidigm, works across New England on strategic initiatives such as reducing health care associated infections, reducing readmissions and medication errors, working with nursing homes to improve care for residents, supporting clinical practices in using interoperable health information technology to coordinate care, promoting prevention activities, reducing cardiac disease and diabetes, reducing health care disparities and improving patient and family engagement. The NE QIN-QIO also provides technical assistance for improvement in CMS value-based purchasing programs, including the physician value-based modifier program.

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