IHA’s Response to Coronavirus (COVID-19)
CMS, DMHC and Provider Organizations Share Emerging Best Practices for Telehealth Claims Submission and Reimbursement
IHA's response to COVID-19: Frequently Asked Questions
At IHA, we’re extremely thankful for everything our members – and healthcare stakeholders everywhere – are doing to care for patients, families and communities during this unprecedented time.
We know priorities have shifted dramatically. And, at IHA, we’re committed to help. Not only by remaining focused on our work, but also by providing regular updates on how we’re adapting to meet our members’ changing needs.
Below are Frequently Asked Questions that offer the latest information on our response to the pandemic. We also encourage members to reach out to their IHA Client Success Manager anytime.
We’ll be updating this page as the situation evolves, so be sure to check back frequently.
- General Questions
- Align.Measure.Perform. (AMP) program questions
- Symphony Provider Directory program questions
Is IHA still open for business?
Yes. Well before California’s shelter-in-place order went into effect, our employees began working remotely. Protecting the health and safety of our staff, while continuing to support our members on the front lines, is IHA’s highest priority. To troubleshoot both organizational and personal challenges arising from the pandemic, the executive team holds virtual meetings every day, while the full staff does so every week.
How are you protecting members’ data now that staff are working remotely?
Over the past two years, IHA has taken steps to support efficient and secure remote working, including the protection of member information and data (reminder: IHA doesn’t handle Personal Health Information). For more specifics, participants can reach out to their IHA Client Success Manager.
Will you still host planned committee and board meetings?
Yes, however, we will hold them virtually. Now, more than ever, it’s important for our industry to stay connected while still respecting critical social distancing and shelter-in-place directives. We recommend downloading the free Zoom meeting client ahead of time to make it easier to join our virtual meetings.
Align.Measure.Perform. (AMP) program questions
MEASUREMENT YEAR (MY) 2020
How is IHA accounting for the pandemic’s impact on MY 2020 provider organization (PO) results?
Our goal is to ensure this system-wide crisis does not unfairly affect PO performance results. To achieve this, we’ll use a prioritized, more limited set of measures for measurement year (MY) 2020 for accountability purposes, including public recognition awards, public reporting, and incentive payments. We also updated the incentive design to reward providers for maintaining a certain level of performance in MY 2020 (attainment pathway) instead of holding POs accountable for year-over-year improvements (shared savings pathway).
How did you choose which measures to prioritize for accountability?
Our multi-stakeholder committee members voted to select the measures that are likely to drive the best outcomes for vulnerable populations during the pandemic while still tracking overall performance. The narrower MY 2020 AMP accountability measure set also accounts for the challenges the healthcare delivery system is facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, the majority of HEDIS measures in the smaller set includes updated telehealth guidance as part of measure specifications – a demonstration of the changing measurement landscape to reflect what providers are doing to ensure access.
The pandemic priority measures include:
- Prevention & Screening: childhood and adolescent immunizations
- Diabetes: statin therapy for patients with diabetes; HbA1c control; medication adherence
- Cardiovascular: controlling blood pressure; statin therapy; medication adherence
- Respiratory: appropriate antibiotic use; appropriate testing for pharyngitis; asthma medication ratio
You can find the final MY 2020 measure set on our measure set webpage.
How will you determine incentive payments for MY 2020?
AMP usually rewards provider organizations for meeting performance targets (attainment pathway) and for showing year-over-year improvement (shared savings pathway). But because of COVID-19 impacts, year-over-year performance may not accurately capture PO’s performance improvement in 2020.
That’s why our committees supported updating the MY 2020 IHA value-based incentive design to use only the attainment pathway for 2020. Instead of holding POs accountable for year-over-year improvements, the updated incentive design will reward providers for maintaining a certain level of performance. The Technical Payment Committee will be working to provide recommendations on the performance targets for MY 2020.
You can find detailed information on our value-based incentive design in the Standard Value Based Incentive Design Technical Overview document on our incentive design webpage.
Will you continue to collect and report data in MY 2020?
Yes. Our committees agreed that we should still collect and report data as usual for MY 2020, in part to provide insights from 2020 results due to COVID-19. Across all AMP programs, we plan to use the submitted data to analyze the impact of COVID-19.
Which measures are included in the MY 2020 AMP measure set?
The MY 2020 AMP measure set hasn’t changed and still includes all approved measures for this year. We plan to collect and report on these measures as usual. The only difference is that we’ll use a smaller subset of measures for PO accountability purposes.
We’ve updated the measure set to show which will be used for incentive payments, public reporting, and information only. You can find the full MY 2020 measure set on our measure set webpage.
Symphony Provider Directory program questions
Clients’ internal resources are being directed elsewhere right now. Are we able to shift our Symphony onboarding deadlines?
Our clients’ priorities have changed, and we fully support that. We will absolutely partner with clients to adjust their onboarding timelines as needed. Clients should reach out to their Client Success Manager to discuss or email the Symphony team at email@example.com.
Will IHA still support the onboarding timeline as planned for those members who can still support the implementation?
Yes, IHA and our technology partners are all currently working remotely and will be able to support clients' Symphony onboarding needs. Over the past two years, IHA has taken steps to support efficient and secure remote working, including the protection of member information and data (reminder: IHA doesn’t handle Personal Health Information).
What should clients do if they're still interested in participating in Symphony but simply can’t proceed right now?
We know priorities have shifted dramatically. Those who are interested in Symphony, should reach out to our Business Development team at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can work with you when the time is right.