The winds of change are blowing in Northern New York. These changes are the first wave with true potential to overcome the most pressing challenges faced by healthcare providers in rural communities.
Thirteen leading mental health and addiction treatment providers across seven rural Northern New York counties have teamed up to create Northwinds Integrated Health Network IPA, Inc. The group originally came together in 2017 as part of a Behavioral Health Care Collaborative (BHCC) through the New York State Office for Mental Health and Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services to prepare behavioral health providers for Value Based Payment (VBP) reform.
As a result of that early collaboration, came the formation of an Independent Practice Association (IPA), which is designed to improve health outcomes in the community through better information sharing and coordination of services on a local and regional level. This affiliation through the IPA also facilitates contracting with Managed Care Organizations (MCO) and other entities.
The goal of Value Based Payment is to transform the healthcare payment system so it rewards quality of care instead of the volume of services provided. Northwinds will achieve this transformation by improving the coordination and delivery of behavioral health services, in addition to the integration of primary care and hospital providers.