(LONG BEACH, Calif.) — Eleven of California’s largest physician groups gathered in Long Beach, Calif., yesterday to share best practices and to advance health plan-physician collaboration related to senior care. The SCAN-UCLA Best Practices Summit was sponsored by the not-for-profit SCAN Health Plan and the UCLA Multicampus Program in Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology and focused on best practices in two main areas: multiple chronic disease management and end-of-life care.
“In order to enrich the patient experience, improve health outcomes, and reduce the cost of care, healthcare organizations must work together as never before,” said Dan Osterweil, MD, FACP, vice president, medical director for SCAN Health Plan. “Central to that is the sharing of ideas and programs that are making a difference in one community and providing support to other organizations so they can adopt these best practices as well.”
Presenters sharing their organization’s best practices were Marcus Zachary, MD, from Brown and Toland Medical Group; Jay Thomas, MD, Ph.D., from HealthCare Partners; Terry Hill, MD, FACP, Hill Physicians Medical Group; Lowell Kleinman, MD, and Louise Della Bella, RN, MN, both from Memorial Care Medical Group; and Nancy Boerner, MD, MBA, from Monarch HealthCare. Also in attendance at the summit were representatives from the following medical groups: Applecare; EPIC Management, LP; Facey Medical Foundation; Meritage Medical Network; PrimeCare; and St. Joseph Health.
The discussions at the Best Practices Summit ranged from ways to better manage patients with multiple chronic conditions to addressing end-of-life issues. Among the specific best practices presented were those that covered advance-care planning for high-risk patients, a nursing approach to reduce unwanted care, outpatient palliative care, the attributes of a “virtual-care team,” and a look into a complex-care management program.
After the presentations attendees from the medical groups had the opportunity to work directly with gerontology experts from UCLA and SCAN as well as the presenters themselves, to develop action plans that will allow them to implement these best practices within their own organizations. Clinical and operational counseling and mentoring will continue over the next six months as these groups work to implement new programs to better serve their patients.
“The work to drive adoption of best practices is a critical step toward improving health outcomes across entire populations,” added Dr. Osterweil.
Motivated by the aging of society, new payment mechanisms and greater consumer awareness, the healthcare industry is beginning to see unprecedented creative collaboration between health plans and physicians. In addition to its sponsorship of the Best Practices Summit, SCAN is committed to developing affordable programs and products that meet the needs of Medicare beneficiaries, conducting research into best practices in geriatric care (and then sharing that information across the industry) and adopting improvements in administrative efficiencies between health plans and provider partners with a particular focus on data exchange that supports better systems of care and service.
SCAN Health Plan is one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit MAPD plans currently serving 170,000 members in California. Further information may be obtained at www.scanhealthplan.com or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/scanhealthplan.
Since its inception in 1979, the UCLA Multicampus Program in Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology (MPGMG) has been recognized as a national leader in providing clinical care for older persons, teaching physicians and other health professionals how to better care for older persons, and conducting research aimed at improving the health and independence of older persons. With over 65 full-time faculty members representing many disciplines, the UCLA MPGMG is one of the largest academic geriatrics programs in the world. http://www.geronet.ucla.edu/