AHA’s Value Initiative: Convener and Catalyst for Change

December 21, 2018

// By Jane Weber Brubaker //

Jane Weber BrubakerAt the 2018 SHSMD conference in Seattle, we sat down with Priya Bathija, vice president of AHA’s Value Initiative, and Brian Griffin, SHSMD’s senior editorial specialist, to learn about the program, its scope, and its goals. Launched in December 2017, the Value Initiative’s mission is to be a change agent and provide thought leadership to the hospital industry as it moves toward more affordable and sustainable models of care delivery.

Priya Bathija, vice president, AHA Value Initiative

Priya Bathija, vice president, AHA Value Initiative

Value is often understood in the context of value-based payment models, but the American Hospital Association (AHA) has chosen to take a broader view. “We decided to focus our work on four different areas,” says Bathija. They are:

  • Redesigning the care delivery system
  • Improving quality and patient outcomes
  • Managing risk and offering new payment models
  • Implementing operational solutions

Griffin believes that marketers and strategists have a role to play in the evolution toward value: “In the past they’ve been focused very much on driving volume because that was their primary focus under fee-for-service. But now we need to prepare the field for a new generation of care and reimbursement models such as population health that are starting to take hold and are likely to become more prevalent over time. Under population health, the marketer’s role shifts to priorities such as helping patients make healthy lifestyle changes and manage their chronic conditions.”

SHSMD invited member organizations to submit examples demonstrating their approach to value, and selected some of them to present at the conference. One of the resulting sessions, “Insights to Value: How Health Care Organizations Are Making a Difference in Their Communities,” featured stories from several hospitals. Here we look at two examples — population health programs in Indiana, one created by Good Samaritan and the other by Reid Health. These programs show that health care organizations don’t have to wait for the entire industry to make the shift to value — they can start small and build from there. And marketers are leading the way.

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