It seems like in the past 18 months, there are more and more new terms being thrown around that apply to healthcare and mental health. One term that keeps coming up is “Value-Based Care.” Value-based care is important to understand as we move into the future of mental health.
Value-Based Care Definition
Value-Based Care is a healthcare and mental health reimbursement model that is based on quality of care rather than quantity. It relies on accountability among providers and the positive outcomes in clients. Where traditional care is based on the quantity and type of care a provider gives, value-based care is based on the result of that care (i.e. positive vs. negative patient outcomes). Value-based care rewards providers based on the quality of care they provide.
Value-based care puts much more emphasis on ensuring that providers take care of patients’ needs as much as possible in few visits rather than treating the client and waiting for them to return. This results in the ideal Value-Based Care model: better care for individuals, better health for the community and lower cost of care.
Benefits of Value-Based Care
1. More Efficient Care & Greater Patient Satisfaction
Value-based care models are reliant on quality which requires providers to focus on providing mental health solutions that work and on building relationships with patients. This will also increase patient satisfaction, which is the goal. When providers focus on better care, the more financial rewards they will receive.
2. Reduces Unnecessary Costs & Improves Outcomes
Value-based care is not dependent on the number of sessions or interventions provided, but rather their quality. This means that clients won’t pay for things they didn’t need or that wouldn’t have worked. The focus is on providing personalized solutions which will lead to better outcomes in the long run. Value-based care rewards these outcomes for both the client and the provider.
3. Prices Will Reflect Value
Mental health services are often priced according to supply and demand principles, meaning prices are higher than many can afford. By using value-based care models, price changes can reflect the value that services have for patients. With the focus placed on the individual client rather than how many services can be provided, it will become easier to tie the prices of services to the value they provide.
4. Creates A Healthier Community
One of the main goals of value-based care is to help communities as a whole become healthier. Financial rewards are tied to the satisfaction of clients and their positive outcomes. The more clients that are satisfied with their care, the more stable healthcare and mental health organizations and providers will be.
Is Value-Based Care the Future?
Value-based care models are becoming popular in government agencies, especially for Medicaid and Medicare. With the heavy influence of these programs, it’s likely that more providers will start to benefit by using value-based care models. There are still challenges to work through, such as interoperability with current systems, how to implement it fairly and how to adapt from other healthcare models to value-based care. Many experts are convinced that while change may be slow, it will be positive over time.
How EHR Software Supports Value-Based Care
Some EHR software programs are ready to support providers who want to start exploring a value-based care model. EHR analytics can be very helpful for value-based care with predictive analytics and dashboards with KPI’s that can help assess unmet needs in the community. Value-based care trends are having an impact on how data is conceptualized, collected, and analyzed. Providers are looking for EHR technology that enhances workflow, and incorporates value-based care management tools. The value of data in improving patient outcomes is significant and agencies should continue to increase the adoption of new technologies to support this.
When agencies and EHR software developers work together to meet the needs of the community, the end result will be a software that can help increase value-based care and positive client outcomes.