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Partnerships for Health: Lessons for Bridging Community-Based Organizations and Health Care Organizations

January 31, 2018

Given the impact that social factors have on health status and expenditures, and the shift toward value-based payment models that reward providers based on outcomes, health care organizations (HCO) and community-based organizations (CBO) across the country are increasingly working together to address patients' social needs. In Massachusetts, MassHealth is investing in accountable care organizations and community partners to integrate physical health, behavioral health, and long-term services and supports and also funding certain approved "flexible services" that address health-related social needs that are not otherwise covered as MassHealth benefits. Based on a review of promising HCO-CBO partnership models, this brief outlines characteristics of effective HCO-CBO partnerships and provides recommendations to guide the development of successful collaborations between health care and social service organizations. 

Integrating MassHealth Long-Term Services and Supports: Considerations for ACOs and MCOs - Revised

November 21, 2017

This brief prioritizes issues for consideration as accountable care organizations (ACOs) and managed care organizations (MCOs) prepare to integrate and fully manage comprehensive long-term services and supports (LTSS) over the course of Massachusetts' five year 1115 waiver extension. The identified priority areas were informed by lessons learned from managed LTSS programs in other states and interviews with key stakeholders in Massachusetts. This brief concludes with a series of detailed descriptions of the institutional and community LTSS covered under the Medicaid state plan that will eventually be integrated into ACOs and MCOs.

Access to Outpatient Mental Health Services in Massachusetts: A Summary of Findings

October 30, 2017

This series of reports describes the results of a comprehensive mixed-methods study, Access to Outpatient Mental Health Services in Massachusetts. The study sought to quantify the wait times for outpatient mental health office visits in Massachusetts, better understand the experiences of clients seeking an appointment, and identify facilitators and barriers to accessing mental health services. Study findings are based on primary data from multiple sources, including qualitative data from stakeholder interviews and client focus groups and quantitative data from surveys of clinicians and administrators at organizations providing outpatient mental health services.

2011-2013 Connecting Consumer with Care: Grant Area Evaluation

July 23, 2014

The Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation has funded the Connecting Consumers with Care grant program consistently since 2001. The program supports community health centers and community-based organizations in helping consumers enroll in and maintain publicly subsidized health insurance coverage. The program also encourages collaborative problem solving to minimize system-level barriers and enhanced education and empowerment of consumers so that they may navigate systems of health coverage and care with decreasing dependence on grantee organizations. During the October 2011 -- September 2013 grant cycle, the Foundation funded 13 organizations across Massachusetts. While this funding period preceded the first Affordable Care Act (ACA) open enrollment period, lessons from the outreach, enrollment, and post-enrollment work of these grantees remain invaluable to efforts to connect consumers with health coverage and care both in Massachusetts and across the country.This report describes findings from the evaluation of the 2011 -- 2013 grant cycle. The aims of the evaluation were to 1) assess progress made across the grantee sites on select outreach and enrollment measures; 2) describe the practices grantees adopted to reach out to and enroll consumers in insurance, increase consumer self-sufficiency, and collaborate with other agencies to minimize barriers to care; and 3) characterize barriers experienced by grantees as they worked to meet the goals of the program.

2012 Annual Report: Blue Cross Blue Shield Foundation of Massachusetts

April 23, 2013

Since the Foundation was created in 2001 by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts has supported hundreds of communitybased programs and projects that have had a sustainable, positive impact on health care for low-income, vulnerable, and uninsured residents of Massachusetts. Grantmaking is organized into defined program areas that are consistent with the Foundation's mission and priorities. Currently, much of the funding is aimed at supporting two core objectives -- making health care in Massachusetts more affordable, and helping uninsured residents gain and maintain access to health coverage and needed care. The 2012 Annual Report gives more insight into the Foundation's various grantmaking and financial activities.

Effective Education, Outreach, and Enrollment Approaches for Populations Newly Eligible for Health Coverage

March 13, 2012

Offers strategies, lessons learned, and links to templates, materials, and other resources to help states plan and implement outreach and enrollment efforts, with a focus on those who will become eligible for Medicaid or subsidized coverage in 2014.

Mitigating Risk in a State Health Insurance Exchange

December 31, 2011

Describes how the Massachusetts HealthConnector designed a risk-mitigation program to stabilize insurance premiums. Offers lessons for federal reform efforts in implementing risk corridors, reinsurance, and risk adjustment.

Determining Health Benefit Designs to Be Offered on a State Health Insurance Exchange

November 30, 2011

As a resource for states in planning and implementing an insurance exchange, provides documents and lessons learned from Massachusetts' development, through a public procurement process, of health insurance products for unsubsidized individual purchasers.

Massachusetts Health Reform: A Five-Year Progress Report

November 18, 2011

Examines the implementation of reform provisions, including subsidized coverage expansion, individual and employer mandates, and insurance exchange; costs and funding; impact on coverage and access to care; and whether healthcare costs can be contained.

Building an Effective Health Insurance Exchange Website

April 5, 2011

Offers lessons and resources from Massachusetts about teams and partnerships, vendors, stakeholder input, system requirements, and ongoing improvement to help states plan, build, and implement Web sites for health insurance exchanges.