Re­form on the agenda

HFMA con­fer­ence to ex­plore reper­cus­sions of ACA

Modern Healthcare - - THE WEEK IN HEALTHCARE - Beth Kutscher

Fi­nan­cial ex­ec­u­tives will gather next month in Or­lando, Fla., at the Health­care Fi­nan­cial Man­age­ment As­so­ci­a­tion’s An­nual National In­sti­tute to dis­cuss the con­tin­u­ing re­ver­ber­a­tions from health­care re­form.

Key themes will in­clude health in­sur­ance ex­changes, changes to the health­care de­liv­ery sys­tem and value-based health­care, said Scott Ken­emore, a spokesman for the group, which rep­re­sents 40,000 mem­bers in­clud­ing chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cers, trea­sur­ers, ac­coun­tants and other fi­nan­cial pro­fes­sion­als.

Ken­emore said 5,000 at­ten­dees are ex­pected at this year’s meet­ing. He de­clined to dis­close last year’s num­bers, but Mod­ern Health­care has re­ported that about 5,000 peo­ple at­tended last June in Las Vegas. This year’s con­fer­ence will run June 16-19.

Speak­ers will in­clude Dr. Don­ald Ber­wick, for­mer CMS ad­min­is­tra­tor and co-founder of the In­sti­tute for Health­care Im­prove­ment, who is ex­pected to ad­dress bar­ri­ers that health sys­tems must over­come to change their de­liv­ery mod­els and im­prove out­comes while con­trol­ling costs.

While the meet­ing will ex­plore fa­mil­iar fi­nan­cial top­ics—such as rev­enue cy­cle man­age­ment and merg­ers and ac­qui­si­tions—a sig­nif­i­cant fo­cus will be on how the pay­ment land­scape will change af­ter key pro­vi­sions of the Pa­tient Pro­tec­tion and Af­ford­able Care Act go into ef­fect next year.

Most notably, state health in­sur­ance ex­changes will be­gin en­roll­ment in Oc­to­ber, and ses­sions will ex­plore what that means for health­care providers and how they can man­age the un­cer­tainty of how that un­folds.

There will also be sig­nif­i­cant em­pha­sis on op­er­at­ing un­der new re­im­burse­ment mod­els, in­clud­ing how to get the most out of man­aged­care con­tracts and the greater tran­si­tion from vol­ume to value.

Other no­table pre­sen­ters will in­clude Robert Kolodgy, se­nior vice pres­i­dent and CFO at the Blue Cross and Blue Shield As­so­ci­a­tion, who will talk about how pay­ers and providers are col­lab­o­rat­ing on the value-based model; and Dr. Bob Kocher, a for­mer spe­cial as­sis­tant on health­care and eco­nomic pol­icy in the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion, who will dis­cuss im­prov­ing price trans­parency to re­duce health­care costs.

The vol­ume-to-value shift also re­ceived at­ten­tion dur­ing last year’s meet­ing, when HFMA Pres­i­dent and CEO Joe Fifer took the stage and told at­ten­dees in the lead-up to the U.S. Supreme Court’s de­ci­sion on health­care re­form that the evo­lu­tion would come re­gard­less of the jus­tices’ de­ci­sion.

And now that the fu­ture of the Af­ford­able Care Act is ce­mented, it’s fit­ting per­haps that this year’s con­fer­ence brochure opens with the crossed-out words “The way we’ve al­ways done things” and “What now?” scrib­bled in black marker and un­der­lined twice.

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