HHS doles out $100M to spur Medicaid innovation

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services yesterday launched a new initiative, allocating more than $100 million in technical support to collaborate with states to improve Medicaid programs and lower costs.

The Medicaid Innovation Accelerator Program (IAP) will provide data analytics, help states enhance their quality measurement and advance effective sharing of best practices among all states, according to a letter the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services sent to all state Medicaid directors.

"Medicaid innovation is moving forward, and the new Medicaid Innovation Accelerator Program ... will give states the opportunity to even further strengthen their great work," HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell said in a statement. "HHS will provide strategically targeted resources that states can leverage to enhance the impact of their efforts to transform healthcare."

The new innovation program will begin its work by supporting states' innovation through four key functions:

  • New models: The IAP will develop and provide states with information and tools, including financial modeling and design payment strategies, to help implement promising care models. The IAP will target efforts on areas of critical need defined by high spending, high disease burden and/or high disparities for the Medicaid population as well as interventions that already have proven to improve care and/or reduce costs.
  • Data analytics: The IAP will help states leverage new emerging data sources to promote targets for intervention, identify best practices and maximize efficiencies.
  • Improved quality measurement: The IAP will help states align and integrate quality measurement tools.
  • State-to-state learning and federal evaluation: The IAP will share best practices, including supporting rapid cycle improvement efforts, among state Medicaid programs.

To learn more:
- here's the HHS statement
- read the CMS letter