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Survey: Care Continuum Relationships Matter, Whether Formal or Informal

News  |  By Jonathan Bees  
   February 28, 2017

HealthLeaders' Annual Industry Outlook Survey asked senior healthcare executives about the challenges of transitioning to value-based care, about their care continuum and financial strategies, and about organizational performance.

Healthcare leaders see value in both informal and formal relationships as they develop organizational strategic plans for the care continuum, according to the January/February 2017 HealthLeaders Annual Industry Outlook Survey.

When asked about care continuum and postacute care organizational plans, survey respondents mention looking to develop stronger relationships (67%), followed by looking to partner with providers (55%) and looking to acquire providers (22%).

The responses are inversely correlated with the level of commitment required by their organizations, indicating that respondents see value in more informal relationships and recognize that care continuum and postacute care plans don't necessarily require spending financial resources or entering into complex agreements.

"This shows that folks understand that to move to value you have to have better handoffs, better coordination of care, but the other thing is, you don't have to own everything," says Mark Laney, MD, CEO of Mosaic Life Care, a St. Joseph, Missouri-based health system with more than 60 clinical facilities serving a 23-county area of northwest Missouri, northeast Kansas, and southeast Nebraska. "It's a great realization that there's a lot of ways to provide seamless care and you don't necessarily have to own all of it."

Financial resources, however, may also play a role in the degree to which respondent organizations seek to acquire providers in the care continuum.

Based on net patient revenue, more large (31%) and medium (27%) organizations than small organizations (17%) say they are looking to acquire providers. And financial resources also impact the degree to which respondents say they are looking to partner with providers, with more large organizations (69%) than small (57%) and medium (51%) organizations saying this.

Interestingly, respondents who cite looking to acquire providers indicate they have a greater share of value-based net patient revenue (27%) than those who mention looking to partner with providers (19%) and those looking to develop stronger relationships (18%).

Respondents who say care continuum and postacute care plans are not a significant part of their business have the lowest value-based net patient revenue percentage (7%).

This indicates that as providers make increasingly greater commitments to value-based care, such as owning parts of the continuum associated with postacute care, there is a corresponding increase in value-based net patient revenue.

Jonathan Bees is a research analyst for HealthLeaders.

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