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July 26, 2018

MassHealth introduced accountable care organizations (ACOs) for many of its members in March 2018. An ACO is a group of doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers that work together with the goals of delivering better care to members, improving the population’s health, and controlling costs. This brief serves as a resource for stakeholders (i.e., providers, health care administrators, policymakers) to help explain the key elements of MassHealth ACOs. A variety of topics are covered in this brief, including:

June 26, 2018

This guidebook is designed to help health care administrators and providers better understand the types of social services available in Massachusetts, the organizations that provide such services, and their key sources of funding. This resource is intended to facilitate greater coordination between these organization types, and especially with MassHealth ACOs as they seek to integrate, better coordinate with social services, improve health outcomes, and reduce health care costs.

May 31, 2018

This brief frames the key issues and potential impacts to Massachusetts consumers that may result from implementation of the federal proposed rule to expand the availability of Association Health Plans (AHPs). This brief:

March 29, 2018

This brief provides an overview of the steps that Massachusetts has taken to establish a functioning insurance market that provides consumers with meaningful access to health coverage. It includes a review of statutory and regulatory provisions in place today, and provides context for key health reform initiatives that have occurred over the past 30+ years. This brief is structured around four key components of a functioning market for health coverage:

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.

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.

November 9, 2017

The fourth edition of the tracking tool provides a detailed description of key components of Chapter 224, highlighting the progress the state has made in its implementation of the law as of November 2017. This tool is designed for policymakers, advocates, and other stakeholders who wish to track when and how state leaders have addressed policy issues pertaining to Chapter 224.

October 31, 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.

October 5, 2017

Federal authorization for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) expired on September 30, 2017. Senators Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) have filed a bill to extend CHIP for five years, but Congress did not act quickly enough to prevent the current authorization from expiring. Unspent federal CHIP funds may be carried over into the next fiscal year and Massachusetts’s current allotment of federal CHIP funds should allow the state to continue to use CHIP funds for benefits until early 2018.

September 21, 2017

UPDATED (September 2017) chart pack produced by the Massachusetts Medicaid Policy Institute (MMPI), a program of the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation, in partnership with the Center for Health Law and Economics at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. This updated edition includes MassHealth enrollment as of May 2017 and spending from state fiscal year 2016. It is made available in PDF and PowerPoint formats to facilitate its use in presentations.

July 12, 2017

This primer is designed to increase understanding of the behavioral health care system in Massachusetts and the issues affecting access to care for individuals with mental health and substance use disorders. It is intended to serve as a foundation for future work focused on behavioral health system solutions.

June 27, 2017

This chart pack provides an overview of the Senate-proposed Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017, highlighting some of its key provisions, particularly as they relate to Medicaid. Developed by Manatt Health, this chart pack was commissioned by the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation for the Massachusetts Coalition for Coverage and Care.

June 22, 2017

This report describes the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) in Massachusetts and its role as part of MassHealth. Though there is no expiration date for CHIP in federal law, Congress has authorized funding of the program through September 30, 2017. Without Congressional action, a majority of states, including Massachusetts, will exhaust their current federal CHIP allocation by March 2018. This report discusses the importance of CHIP and the broader health policy debate, including reauthorization, now taking place in Washington.

June 12, 2017

This chart pack provides updated MassHealth enrollment data as of March 2017.

May 23, 2017

The Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation, on behalf of the Massachusetts Coalition for Coverage and Care, funded a state-level analysis on the impact of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) on Massachusetts focused on 2022, when the law would be fully phased in.

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