Douglas County’s coordinated care organization, Umpqua Health Alliance, is trying to improve the health of county residents.
Dr. Bruce Croffy, chief medical officer for Umpqua Health, which oversees the local CCO, was interviewed on CHI Mercy Health’s Talking Health on News Radio 1240 KQEN by host Lisa Platt and shared information about the organization and the Oregon Health Plan members it serves throughout Douglas County.
The following is an edited version of that interview.
Lisa: What is a coordinated care organization?
Bruce: Essentially it is an organization charged with managing the delivery of health care, along with the costs associated with providing these services for Oregonians who are eligible for Medicaid within the state.
Each CCO receives a set amount of money that’s determined based on an area’s overall population, as well as how healthy or unhealthy its community members are, and using these funds the CCOs are tasked with managing both the delivery of health care and lowering health care expenses.
Lisa: How many members does Umpqua Health have enrolled in our local CCO?
Bruce: Right now we have about 26,000 under contract. These are mainly working adults whose employers don’t necessarily offer an insurance plan, plus women and infants.
Also, since the Affordable Care Act expanded the allowable coverage based upon federal poverty levels and whether one qualifies under that umbrella, we’ve expanded the population we serve.
Locally, OHA members have grown by 40 percent since the start of the ACA.
Lisa: What impact do you think Umpqua Health Alliance is having on our community and its beneficiaries?
Bruce: It’s delivery of health care for the physical medicine piece, and also paying close attention to integrating behavioral health issues, and poor dental health, because dental is part of what is mandated.
It is the social determinants of health, like homelessness and hunger, and it’s paying attention to all of those things that definitely affect one’s ability to obtain care.
Lisa: What kind of outreach is UHA doing to improve the health status of residents?
Bruce: We’ve put together aggressive recruiting so there is a number of great providers who are dedicated to remaining in the community providing quality care for our members.
We are also continuing to invest in not only primary care docs, but we would like to provide a broader array of providers in our community. If those needs can be met in the community, that’s important to us.
Lisa: Tell us about the Do-One-Thing campaign and what you’re trying to do with that?
Bruce: This was an effort on our part to get out there and start talking about trying to live a healthier lifestyle, to adopt habits that will correct issues like tobacco use, alcohol use and drug use.
One has to start with little steps, and once one succeeds with those little steps, then go forward and continue to improve overall health and well being.
Lisa: How do you sign up for it?
Bruce: All of the information about the campaign is on our website at www.umpquahealth.com.
Go to Do-One-Thing and you can enter your name and contact information and one of our family services staff will give you some information on what your first small step might be.
Lisa: Do you offer any programs specifically for new moms?
Bruce: Yes, the New Day Program is dedicated to connecting with women who are currently pregnant and who have opiate addiction or have other addictive problems.
The concept is that if one is pregnant and taking opiates on a regular basis, one goes through the effects of the opiates, the fetus experiences similar effects, and when the mom cuts back on the doses, the child goes through withdrawal.
That is very damaging to the health of the baby-to-be, damaging in the sense that it can affect long-term behavior, the cognitive behavior and the overall health of the child.
So we work with the obstetricians in the community and as women are screened in that initial prenatal meeting, they are also screened for evidence of abusive agents in the bloodstream, and then we work with them to meet and talk about how to get them through the pregnancy with the best outcome for both them and their baby.
Lisa: How many clinics does UHA have in Douglas County?
Bruce: We have two clinics in Douglas County. One is the Harvard Clinic and we also have the Newton Creek Clinic, which we are building a new building to house off of Northeast Stephens. At both clinics, we have family practitioners, several psychiatrists, behavioral health specialists, and we also have a great relationship with two care organizations that provide dental services for our members.
Lisa: Can anyone go to the UHA clinics?
Bruce: Yes. Of course we serve UHA members, but we also can care for seniors who have Medicare. People with commercial insurance can also come to the clinic and be seen. And we see people without coverage, so if someone had insurance but lost it, we can continue providing some care for them as well.
Lisa: What kind of services will you (offer) at your new Newton Creek Clinic?
Bruce: It’s going to be a full-service clinic, and an important addition to the provider network within Roseburg.
It will be the eventual home of the Newton Creek Clinic that is currently also at the Harvard Medical Park. Construction is planned for completion sometime in late 2018.
In addition to the providers, we’ll have behavioral specialists, a fully operational urgent care center, which will be critical. We’ll also have dental chairs so we can have dental care provided within the clinic.
Our long-term plan will be to have full laboratory services, full advanced imaging services, so it will be a one-stop shop for our membership that has any number of complex needs. And we will have a pharmacy there as well.
Lisa: Talk more about helping people get healthy, I understand UHA is a supporter of the Total Health Improvement Plan classes.
Bruce: The program is great for addressing some of the dietary needs of some of the folks with diabetes since we’ve lost diabetes education. So we’re making an effort to steer some of our diabetic patients to enroll in this program as well. It’s such good nutrition instruction, that it’s great for diabetics as well as anybody else.
Lisa: How is your board made up?
Bruce: It is comprised of a number of providers who have a seat on the board as well as business leaders within the community. Health providers on the board are a critical aspect to the success of our program too.