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2011 Minnesota Statutes

This is a historical version of this statute section. Also view the most recent published version.

62U.04 PAYMENT REFORM; HEALTH CARE COSTS; QUALITY OUTCOMES.

Subdivision 1.Development of tools to improve costs and quality outcomes.

The commissioner of health shall develop a plan to create transparent prices, encourage greater provider innovation and collaboration across points on the health continuum in cost-effective, high-quality care delivery, reduce the administrative burden on providers and health plans associated with submitting and processing claims, and provide comparative information to consumers on variation in health care cost and quality across providers. The development must be complete by January 1, 2010.

Subd. 2.Calculation of health care costs and quality.

The commissioner of health shall develop a uniform method of calculating providers' relative cost of care, defined as a measure of health care spending including resource use and unit prices, and relative quality of care. In developing this method, the commissioner must address the following issues:

(1) provider attribution of costs and quality;

(2) appropriate adjustment for outlier or catastrophic cases;

(3) appropriate risk adjustment to reflect differences in the demographics and health status across provider patient populations, using generally accepted and transparent risk adjustment methodologies;

(4) specific types of providers that should be included in the calculation;

(5) specific types of services that should be included in the calculation;

(6) appropriate adjustment for variation in payment rates;

(7) the appropriate provider level for analysis;

(8) payer mix adjustments, including variation across providers in the percentage of revenue received from government programs; and

(9) other factors that the commissioner determines are needed to ensure validity and comparability of the analysis.

Subd. 3.Provider peer grouping.

(a) The commissioner shall develop a peer grouping system for providers based on a combined measure that incorporates both provider risk-adjusted cost of care and quality of care, and for specific conditions as determined by the commissioner. In developing this system, the commissioner shall consult and coordinate with health care providers, health plan companies, state agencies, and organizations that work to improve health care quality in Minnesota. For purposes of the final establishment of the peer grouping system, the commissioner shall not contract with any private entity, organization, or consortium of entities that has or will have a direct financial interest in the outcome of the system.

(b) By no later than October 15, 2010, the commissioner shall disseminate information to providers on their total cost of care, total resource use, total quality of care, and the total care results of the grouping developed under this subdivision in comparison to an appropriate peer group. Any analyses or reports that identify providers may only be published after the provider has been provided the opportunity by the commissioner to review the underlying data and submit comments. Providers may be given any data for which they are the subject of the data. The provider shall have 30 days to review the data for accuracy and initiate an appeal as specified in paragraph (d).

(c) By no later than January 1, 2011, the commissioner shall disseminate information to providers on their condition-specific cost of care, condition-specific resource use, condition-specific quality of care, and the condition-specific results of the grouping developed under this subdivision in comparison to an appropriate peer group. Any analyses or reports that identify providers may only be published after the provider has been provided the opportunity by the commissioner to review the underlying data and submit comments. Providers may be given any data for which they are the subject of the data. The provider shall have 30 days to review the data for accuracy and initiate an appeal as specified in paragraph (d).

(d) The commissioner shall establish an appeals process to resolve disputes from providers regarding the accuracy of the data used to develop analyses or reports. When a provider appeals the accuracy of the data used to calculate the peer grouping system results, the provider shall:

(1) clearly indicate the reason they believe the data used to calculate the peer group system results are not accurate;

(2) provide evidence and documentation to support the reason that data was not accurate; and

(3) cooperate with the commissioner, including allowing the commissioner access to data necessary and relevant to resolving the dispute.

If a provider does not meet the requirements of this paragraph, a provider's appeal shall be considered withdrawn. The commissioner shall not publish results for a specific provider under paragraph (e) or (f) while that provider has an unresolved appeal.

(e) Beginning January 1, 2011, the commissioner shall, no less than annually, publish information on providers' total cost, total resource use, total quality, and the results of the total care portion of the peer grouping process. The results that are published must be on a risk-adjusted basis.

(f) Beginning March 30, 2011, the commissioner shall no less than annually publish information on providers' condition-specific cost, condition-specific resource use, and condition-specific quality, and the results of the condition-specific portion of the peer grouping process. The results that are published must be on a risk-adjusted basis.

(g) Prior to disseminating data to providers under paragraph (b) or (c) or publishing information under paragraph (e) or (f), the commissioner shall ensure the scientific validity and reliability of the results according to the standards described in paragraph (h). If additional time is needed to establish the scientific validity and reliability of the results, the commissioner may delay the dissemination of data to providers under paragraph (b) or (c), or the publication of information under paragraph (e) or (f). If the delay is more than 60 days, the commissioner shall report in writing to the chairs and ranking minority members of the legislative committees with jurisdiction over health care policy and finance the following information:

(1) the reason for the delay;

(2) the actions being taken to resolve the delay and establish the scientific validity and reliability of the results; and

(3) the new dates by which the results shall be disseminated.

If there is a delay under this paragraph, the commissioner must disseminate the information to providers under paragraph (b) or (c) at least 90 days before publishing results under paragraph (e) or (f).

(h) The commissioner's assurance of valid and reliable clinic and hospital peer grouping performance results shall include, at a minimum, the following:

(1) use of the best available evidence, research, and methodologies; and

(2) establishment of an explicit minimum reliability threshold developed in collaboration with the subjects of the data and the users of the data, at a level not below nationally accepted standards where such standards exist.

In achieving these thresholds, the commissioner shall not aggregate clinics that are not part of the same system or practice group. The commissioner shall consult with and solicit feedback from representatives of physician clinics and hospitals during the peer grouping data analysis process to obtain input on the methodological options prior to final analysis and on the design, development, and testing of provider reports.

Subd. 4.Encounter data.

(a) Beginning July 1, 2009, and every six months thereafter, all health plan companies and third-party administrators shall submit encounter data to a private entity designated by the commissioner of health. The data shall be submitted in a form and manner specified by the commissioner subject to the following requirements:

(1) the data must be de-identified data as described under the Code of Federal Regulations, title 45, section 164.514;

(2) the data for each encounter must include an identifier for the patient's health care home if the patient has selected a health care home; and

(3) except for the identifier described in clause (2), the data must not include information that is not included in a health care claim or equivalent encounter information transaction that is required under section 62J.536.

(b) The commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall only use the data submitted under paragraph (a) for the purpose of carrying out its responsibilities in this section, and must maintain the data that it receives according to the provisions of this section.

(c) Data on providers collected under this subdivision are private data on individuals or nonpublic data, as defined in section 13.02. Notwithstanding the definition of summary data in section 13.02, subdivision 19, summary data prepared under this subdivision may be derived from nonpublic data. The commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall establish procedures and safeguards to protect the integrity and confidentiality of any data that it maintains.

(d) The commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall not publish analyses or reports that identify, or could potentially identify, individual patients.

Subd. 5.Pricing data.

(a) Beginning July 1, 2009, and annually on January 1 thereafter, all health plan companies and third-party administrators shall submit data on their contracted prices with health care providers to a private entity designated by the commissioner of health for the purposes of performing the analyses required under this subdivision. The data shall be submitted in the form and manner specified by the commissioner of health.

(b) The commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall only use the data submitted under this subdivision for the purpose of carrying out its responsibilities under this section.

(c) Data collected under this subdivision are nonpublic data as defined in section 13.02. Notwithstanding the definition of summary data in section 13.02, subdivision 19, summary data prepared under this section may be derived from nonpublic data. The commissioner shall establish procedures and safeguards to protect the integrity and confidentiality of any data that it maintains.

Subd. 6.Contracting.

The commissioner may contract with a private entity or consortium of entities to develop the standards. The private entity or consortium must be nonprofit and have governance that includes representatives from the following stakeholder groups: health care providers, health plan companies, hospitals, consumers, employers or other health care purchasers, and state government. The entity or consortium must ensure that the representatives of stakeholder groups in the aggregate reflect all geographic areas of the state. No one stakeholder group shall have a majority of the votes on any issue or hold extraordinary powers not granted to any other governance stakeholder.

Subd. 7.Consumer engagement.

The commissioner of health shall convene a work group to develop strategies for engaging consumers in understanding the importance of health care cost and quality, specifically as it relates to health care outcomes, consumer out-of-pocket costs, and variations in health care cost and quality across providers. The work group shall develop strategies to assist consumers in becoming advocates for higher value health care and a more efficient, effective health care system. The work group shall make recommendations to the commissioner and the legislature by January 1, 2010, and shall identify specific action steps needed to achieve the recommendations.

Subd. 8.Provider innovation to reduce health care costs and improve quality.

(a) Nothing in this section shall prohibit group purchasers and health care providers, upon mutual agreement, from entering into arrangements that establish package prices for a comprehensive set of services or separately for the cost of care for specific health conditions in addition to the baskets of care established in section 62U.05, in order to give providers the flexibility to innovate on ways to reduce health care costs while improving overall quality of care and health outcomes.

(b) The commissioner of health may convene working groups of private sector payers and health care providers to discuss and develop new strategies for reforming health care payment systems to promote innovative care delivery that reduces health care costs and improves quality.

Subd. 9.Uses of information.

(a) For product renewals or for new products that are offered, after 12 months have elapsed from publication by the commissioner of the information in subdivision 3, paragraph (e):

(1) the commissioner of management and budget shall use the information and methods developed under subdivision 3 to strengthen incentives for members of the state employee group insurance program to use high-quality, low-cost providers;

(2) all political subdivisions, as defined in section 13.02, subdivision 11, that offer health benefits to their employees must offer plans that differentiate providers on their cost and quality performance and create incentives for members to use better-performing providers;

(3) all health plan companies shall use the information and methods developed under subdivision 3 to develop products that encourage consumers to use high-quality, low-cost providers; and

(4) health plan companies that issue health plans in the individual market or the small employer market must offer at least one health plan that uses the information developed under subdivision 3 to establish financial incentives for consumers to choose higher-quality, lower-cost providers through enrollee cost-sharing or selective provider networks.

(b) By January 1, 2011, the commissioner of health shall report to the governor and the legislature on recommendations to encourage health plan companies to promote widespread adoption of products that encourage the use of high-quality, low-cost providers. The commissioner's recommendations may include tax incentives, public reporting of health plan performance, regulatory incentives or changes, and other strategies.

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