November 17, 2010

RI Health Care Initiative to Receive Federal Support

Will Allow More Patients to Get Care from Innovative Program

Washington, DC – Rhode Island is one of eight states set to receive federal support from the Multi-Payer Advanced Primary Care Practice (MAPCP) demonstration program.  The state’s congressional delegation announced today that the Rhode Island Chronic Care Sustainability Initiative (CSI) was accepted into the federal program.  This federal support will allow more Rhode Islanders to access CSI’s services and result in better care for patients.  It’s estimated that 70,000 Rhode Islanders currently receive their primary care from one of the 13 participating CSI practices.

CSI is a three year old project convened by the Rhode Island Office of the Health Insurance Commissioner that brings together leading primary care practices, the state’s health insurers, and employers to transform care for chronically ill patients by coordinating payments, contractual terms, and collaborative efforts.  It has demonstrably improved the quality of care for these patients and is recognized as a national model.  Currently, CSI providers offer coordinated, patient-centered care to the Medicare patients they treat, but are not eligible for supplemental assistance from Medicare to help defray the added costs associated with this higher-quality care.  Acceptance into MAPCP will allow CSI providers to receive enhanced payments from Medicare for the service they provide. 

“We know that when doctors work together, patients receive better care.  This is particularly true for seniors who typically visit multiple doctors for a variety of health care conditions.  With the implementation of this program, doctors will now be supported by Medicare in their efforts to coordinate and integrate care, which will keep patients healthier.  I hope this program can help Rhode Island set a national standard for the rest of the country moving forward,” said Senator Jack Reed. 

“By pursuing a new model for the payment and delivery of health services, CSI is improving care for Rhode Islanders and putting our state again on the cutting edge of the reform effort,” said Senator Sheldon Whitehouse.  “The federal support announced today, paired with the Beacon Communities grant Rhode Island received earlier this year from the Recovery Act, will continue to improve care at lower cost for patients in our Ocean State.”

“Rhode Island has consistently been an innovative leader in the delivery of primary care and chronic care management, and will continue to be with the expanded opportunities for patients to take advantage of the Chronic Care Sustainability Initiative,” said Congressman Patrick Kennedy.

“Rhode Island CSI has laid the groundwork for a more effective, patient-centered approach to health care in Rhode Island,” said Congressman Jim Langevin.  “This federal grant will allow us to capitalize on these innovations, which will lead to enhanced patient care at reduced costs for everyone.”

“The MAPCP designation provides important resources to the practices in Rhode Island that are leading the transformation of primary care in the state,” said Health Insurance Commissioner Christopher Koller. “Only by doing this work will we have a health system in Rhode Island that raises community health, increases efficiency and improves the patient experience of care,” he continued. “We are grateful for the leadership of the Rhode Island delegation in securing this support.”

Since 2008, medical practices participating in CSI have documented significant improvement in clinical quality of care for diabetes, depression, and heart disease.  CSI participating practices include: Cranston Family Health & Sports Medicine, Hillside Avenue Family & Community Medicine; University Medicine – Governor St. Primary Care Center; Costal Medical, Inc. – Greenville; Thundermist Health Center; Stuart Demirs, MD; South County Hospital Family Medicine; Memorial Hospital Family Care Center; Carla Cesario, MD, Dariusz Kostrzewa, MD, Stephen Maguire, DO, and Michael Gonzalez, MD; Costal Medical, Inc. – Wakefield; Kristine Cunniff, MD; South County Internal Medicine; and Thundermist Health Center of South County.

In September, the delegation wrote to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to support the inclusion of CSI in MAPCP.  “The stability and proven early success of Rhode Island’s initiative make our state an ideal partner for the MAPCP demonstration,” the delegation wrote.


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