Quad Erat Demonstration

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  • 01/31/2012

Really interesting issue brief from CBO regarding approaches taken in various projects that help in attainment of demonstration goals:

Gather timely data on the use of care, especially hospital admissions. Programs that collected timely data on when their patients’ health problems developed or became exacerbated and where they were treated seemed better able to coordinate and manage their patients’ care. Those efforts could be strengthened if CMS improved its capability to provide programs with timely data on their patients’ use of services.

Focus on transitions in care settings. Programs that smoothed transitions (for example, by providing additional education and support to patients moving from a hospital to a nursing facility or between a primary care provider and a specialist) tended to have fewer hospital admissions.

Use team-based care. Demonstrations that provided close collaboration between care managers and physicians -- especially those with larger teams that included pharmacists, who could help patients manage their medications-- appeared to have fewer hospital admissions.

Target interventions toward high-risk enrollees. Programs that targeted interventions to beneficiaries they identified as being at greatest risk of being hospitalized—on the basis of medical condition, prior hospitalization, or predictive modeling—appeared to have fewer hospital admissions.

Limit the costs of intervention. To achieve federal budgetary savings, a program’s fees or bonuses must be smaller than its reductions in regular Medicare expenditures. There was nearly a threefold difference in the Medicare fees paid to different organizations that combined telephone and in-person contact to coordinate care, an indication that some organizations were able to deliver such interventions much more efficiently than others.

The complete CBO brief can be found here.


Center for Medicine in the Public Interest is a nonprofit, non-partisan organization promoting innovative solutions that advance medical progress, reduce health disparities, extend life and make health care more affordable, preventive and patient-centered. CMPI also provides the public, policymakers and the media a reliable source of independent scientific analysis on issues ranging from personalized medicine, food and drug safety, health care reform and comparative effectiveness.

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