Palliative-care medical home starting in Western states
Increasing the role of palliative care within the framework of acute-care treatment is the goal behind a new program being launched by regional insurer Cambia Health Solutions, company leaders said last week.
The new initiative is set to begin July 1 and will be offered to the more than 2 million members covered within the six health plans the company operates across Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Utah.
As part of the program, Cambia will begin paying for such services as counseling for advance-care planning, care coordination and medical team conferences among health providers caring for seriously ill patients. In addition, the insurer will provide reimbursement for home health aides and in- home counseling, and provide training to providers on developing their ability to better engage patients and their families on discussing a plan for end-of-life care.
“We are embarking on designing a serious illness or palliative- care medical home pilot where we can support providers and members in delivering the care that the members need in their homes or in an outpatient setting,” said Torrie Fields, program director for serious illness and palliative care at Cambia.
The goal is to financially support providers to begin having conversations with patients earlier in the illness process about their quality- of- life plans, Fields said.