The Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF) has been selected by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) as one of 516 awardees to help reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes among millions of Medicare fee-for-service patients. PAMF and other health care organizations participating in the Million Hearts® Cardiovascular Disease Risk Reduction Model will work to decrease cardiovascular disease risk by assessing an individual patient’s risk for heart attack or stroke and applying prevention interventions.
“It’s an honor to be selected to participate in this important national initiative to help prevent heart disease,” says Ed Yu, M.D., medical director of Quality who will be leading this initiative at PAMF. “It ties in perfectly with our already very strong focus on preventive care for our patients. It’s also a welcome and exciting move away from a payment structure based on volume rather than outcomes.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heart disease is the leading cause of death and a major contributor to disability in the United States. One in three deaths is caused by heart attacks and strokes, resulting in over $300 billion of health care costs each year.
Currently, health care organizations and physicians are paid to screen for blood pressure, cholesterol, or other risk factors individually. In testing a new approach, organizations participating in the Million Hearts® Cardiovascular Disease Risk Reduction Model’s intervention group will use a data-driven, widely accepted predictive modeling approach to generate personalized risk scores and develop specific plans in partnership with patients to reduce the risk of having a heart attack or stroke. Accepted applicants were randomly assigned to either the intervention or control group in accordance with the model’s randomized control design.
Overall, nearly 20,000 health care providers and over 3.3 million Medicare fee-for-service patients will participate in the five-year model. PAMF is participating in the intervention group and will work with Medicare fee-for-service patients to determine their ten-year individual risk for a heart attack or stroke.
PAMF will then work with patients individually to identify the best approach or approaches to reducing their risk of having a heart attack or stroke – for example, smoking cessation interventions, blood pressure management, or cholesterol-lowering drugs or aspirin – and will explain the benefits of each approach. Each patient will receive a personalized risk modification plan that will target their specific risk factors. PAMF will be paid for reducing the absolute risk for heart disease or stroke among their high-risk patients.
“Our health care system historically often emphasized acute care over preventive care,” said Patrick Conway, M.D., CMS acting principal deputy administrator and chief medical officer. “This initiative will enhance patient-centered care and give practitioners the resources to invest the time and staff to address and manage patients who are at high risk for heart attacks and strokes.”
Learn more about the Million Hearts® initiative.
For additional information about the Million Hearts® Cardiovascular Risk Reduction Model, including a fact sheet and a list of participants, please visit the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services website.
Six Sutter Medical Network (SMN) physician organizations that participated in the annual CAPG Standards of Excellence Survey, ™ including all five medical foundations, earned Elite status—the highest honor awarded by CAPG, a trade association for physician organizations. The survey measures medical group infrastructure against multiple criteria, such as patient experience, population health and affordability.
The San Jose Sharks hockey team’s Sharks Foundation recently selected the Palo Alto Medical Foundation’s (PAMF) Youth Nutrition Program (5210 Numbers to Live By! Program) to receive a grant of $25,000. The youth nutrition program teaches healthy nutrition and exercise habits to school children.
This grant is part of the Sharks Foundation’s 2015-2016 $565,000 grant grand total that was awarded to 24 local non-profits to further their work in supporting underserved young people and their families. Each recipient was given $20,000 to $25,000.
Steve Lai, M.D., a palliative medicine physician at The Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF), recently received the Practice Change Enhancement Award, a grant of $15,000, from the Hartford Foundation. This grant will be used to support Dr. Lai’s ongoing work to improve the quality of care we provide when assisting older and chronically ill patients in making advance care planning decisions.
“It’s an honor to receive this award and support,” says Dr. Lai. “It shows recognition for the value of our work to date and makes it possible to build on and sustain our efforts.”
In 2014 Dr. Lai was one of 10 individuals in the U.S. chosen for the Practice Change Leaders Program – a national program designed to develop, support and expand the influence of leaders who are committed to achieving transformative improvements in older adult care. As part of the program, Dr. Lai received a grant of $45,000 and mentorship from experienced leaders in the field to support a quality improvement project at PAMF led by him.
The Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF), part of the Sutter Health network of care, today opened a new 18,000-square-foot medical center in Danville that is home to a growing team of primary care physicians and medical support staff.
At the new PAMF Danville Center, patients can access a full range of health care services, including primary outpatient care (internal medicine, family medicine and pediatrics), as well as diagnostic imaging, mammography and laboratory services — all in one location. Specialty care and advanced diagnostic services are available 12 miles away at our Dublin Center.