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Iowa Committee Makes Recommendations to Increase Value in Health Care
Date:10/12/2009

. 2: Innovate through collaboration. The future of health care will rely more than ever on innovation. In Iowa, innovation is routinely achieved through formal and informal collaborations among key stakeholders: patients, providers, government and private organizations that finance health care. Such collaboration exists in part because Iowa's system delivers care across a large rural landscape with few specialty providers. Per capita reimbursement rates among the lowest in the country have also led to collaboration among patients and providers. This collaboration has become an engine for innovation.

For instance, the Iowa Chronic Care Consortium -- a partnership of the Iowa Farm Bureau, the Iowa United Auto Workers, and two large hospital networks -- established an outreach program to help diabetic and congestive heart failure patients manage their diseases and access the most appropriate level of care. This program reduced costs, hospitalizations and emergency room visits.

Principle No. 3: Expand the role of primary care. This can provide comprehensive well-care and offer prevention programs to individual patients. It also should support health management so individuals can increase the value they receive from acute-care specialty services and long-term care services. In particular, primary care should ensure that more intensive sub-acute specialty services or long-term care services are provided to those who need them.

Iowa's policy landscape has emphasized primary care for some time. The Iowa Medical Home System Advisory Council has created an extensive public health infrastructure including strong links between the public health community, payers, patients and providers with an emphasis on attending to chronic care management in the community setting. Additionally, the Iowa Safety Net Collaborative Network has expanded primary care services to those for whom it is often most inaccessible -- the poor, the uninsured an
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SOURCE The Concord Coalition
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