Arbor Research to Evaluate New Home Health Value-Based Purchasing Model

Arbor Research Collaborative for Health was recently awarded a contract from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) to evaluate the impact of the Home Health Value-Based Purchasing (HHVBP) Model. Arbor Research is partnering with L&M Policy Research on this project.

As ongoing health care transformation efforts aim to achieve better care, lower costs, and improved health, there is a pressing need to ensure that Medicare payment policies promote the quality and efficiency of care for a growing population of beneficiaries. The HHVBP Model was implemented in nine states starting on January 1, 2016.

The goals of the Model are:

  • to improve the quality and delivery of home health care services to Medicare beneficiaries by providing incentives for better quality care with greater efficiency
  • study new quality and efficiency measures for appropriateness in the home health setting
  • enhance the current public reporting process regarding home health quality measures

Home health services have the potential to preempt the need for other more intensive and costly forms of care. Additionally, the potential payment adjustments for home health agencies are large in comparison with other value-based purchasing programs. In this context, the HHVBP Model has the potential to be valuable in supporting improvements in care and outcomes for beneficiaries.

Project Director Dr. Alyssa Pozniak commented, “Our eight-year evaluation of CMMI’s HHVBP Model presents a unique opportunity to contribute to the growing body of research that examines how financial incentives to home health agencies and other health care providers affect quality and efficiency of care. By employing highly-integrated mixed methods, we will ensure that the quantitative and qualitative aspects of the evaluation inform and complement each other, providing a rich and extensive assessment of the Model.”

As part of this evaluation, our team will collect, analyze, and synthesize information about the response of home health agencies to the HHVBP Model and the implications for quality of care, beneficiary access and experience with care, utilization of services, and Medicare spending.

Principal Investigator Dr. Marc Turenne noted, “At Arbor Research, we have a strong history of contributing to the development and evaluation of new Medicare payment initiatives. Our team is excited to work on this latest project to determine whether this approach to value-based purchasing in the home health care setting can support improvements in the quality of care for beneficiaries and efficiency of the Medicare program.”