Waivers - Colorful illustration of people collaborating on fraud and abuse waivers

Colchester, Vt., – OneCare Vermont, a pioneering accountable care organization dedicated to improving Vermont’s healthcare system, has announced the launch of six new waivers aimed at enhancing access to mental health care, reducing hospital readmissions, increasing preventive care measure performance, and improving overall health care accessibility for Vermonters. OneCare allocated $100,000 to fund delivery system projects intended to impact quality goals. Six projects were selected for funding from a robust pool of innovative applications.

One of the unique features of OneCare is that, to support its innovative work, the federal and state governments have granted waivers from certain rules and regulations that often pose challenges to cooperation amongst health care providers delivering health care for Vermonters. These waivers give OneCare’s provider partners flexibility and freedom from some burdensome requirements within the highly regulated healthcare system, enabling them to create innovative programs that enhance both the quality of health care delivered and the accessibility of this care.

“The implementation of these waivers allows our health care providers to better address critical health care needs across diverse sectors throughout the state,” commented Dr. Carrie Wulfman, OneCare chief medical officer. “From enhancing children’s access to mental health services to offering acute and supportive care within patients’ homes instead of nursing facilities, these initiatives help ensure Vermonters receive timely and appropriate care tailored to their needs.”

The six waivers will allow for the following initiatives:

  • Southwestern Vermont Medical Center (SVMC): Collaborating with Turning Point, SVMC pioneers a program to facilitate inpatient detoxification and continuing sobriety for individuals with alcohol use disorder. By guiding patients through the detox process and facilitating post-discharge residential care placement, this initiative prioritizes comprehensive care and mitigates the risk of readmissions, underscoring SVMC’s commitment to addressing substance use disorder treatment.
  • Chittenden County Pediatrics Office: Recognizing the imperative for accessible mental health services, a Chittenden County pediatrics office introduces mental health groups tailored for patients and family members. These groups offer a supportive environment to address pertinent issues such as new parenthood, anxiety management, and eating disorders, aiming to bolster mental health support where individual therapy may be inaccessible.
  • Northwestern Medical Center: Northwestern’s initiative to provide hypertension resources to patients with uncontrolled blood pressure represents a proactive approach to chronic disease management. By educating patients and equipping them with essential resources and support, this program aims to optimize hypertension control and effectively manage chronic conditions, aligning with population health management goals.
  • UVM Health Network Home Health and Hospice (UVMHHH): The pilot of an acute home care patient path by UVMHHH signifies a revolutionary approach to post-discharge care. This initiative will offer acute and supportive care within the comfort of patients’ homes, aiming to reduce the need for skilled nursing facility stays or inpatient admissions, thus reducing the all-cause re-admission rate.
  • Cathedral Square: Through wellness nurses at SASH (Support and Services at Home), Cathedral Square embarks on a mission to promote preventive health measures among SASH residents. Nurses conducting Medicare Annual Wellness visits in collaboration with primary care providers is expected to enhance wellness, bridge care gaps, and foster a culture of proactive health care management.
  • Central Vermont Medical Center (CVMC) Transport: In partnership with Community Rides Vermont, CVMC Transport introduces on-demand transportation services for medical appointments, discharges, and pharmacy visits. This initiative directly addresses barriers to health care access, ensuring that patients can easily access vital healthcare services while reducing reliance on emergency department visits and inpatient utilization.

We are proud to have the opportunity to support these initiatives that will benefit Vermont patients in ways that would not be possible without the waivers that are unique to OneCare. These waivers demonstrate our commitment to innovation, collaboration, and value-based care. Through innovative solutions and strategic partnerships, OneCare remains committed to improving the function of the health care system and making it more accessible for all Vermonters.

Abe Berman

CEO, OneCare Vermont

OneCare Vermont brings together over 5,000 health care providers throughout the state of Vermont to improve the quality of Vermont’s healthcare system. Waivers are available to OneCare’s provider partners throughout 2024.

For more information

Please contact Public Affairs at OneCare Vermont. public@onecarevt.org | 802-847-1346

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