Health Equity Roundtable Proceedings
On November 30, 2022, Avalere hosted an in-person roundtable discussion with representation from foundations, government agencies, advocacy groups, health systems, professional societies, strategy, and nonprofits to draft recommendations to funders, policymakers, and government leaders about how to effectively support research in health equity. The COVID-19 pandemic exposed gaps in health equity and has provided a prime opportunity to drive the narrative for a more equitable healthcare system. For researchers specifically, the roundtable recommended creating more granular recommendations for stakeholders that outline tangible steps (e.g. creating a 1-pager for practitioners that detail “10 things that work”) to create immediate impact and can ultimately be scaled to similar organizations and populations. The full report can be accessed here: HSTRC Health Equity Roundtable Meeting Proceedings.
Value Propositions: How to Pitch Your Program
To sustain the innovative models developed under the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Health Systems Transformation Research Coordinating Center grants, leaders of the grant-funded projects must develop long-term plans to fund and operate their programs, which may require new partnerships or funding. This HSTRC Value Proposition tool describes best practices for leaders to develop a value proposition to secure the right partners and/or investment in their program and will guide staff through gathering the right information, assessing the audience, preparing a concise message, and narrowing in on the ‘ask’ of potential partners.
Building the Right Team: Hiring for Care Delivery Improvement
Innovative care models require team members to take on new roles and responsibilities that go beyond traditional administrative or clinical support roles. These roles enable patient- centered, coordinated care that focuses on holistic understanding of the patient and addressing their healthcare needs in the context of their social environment. Determining what to include in job descriptions can be difficult, as these roles may be new and unique. This HSTRC Job Description Template tool provides templates for job descriptions and tips for recruitment efforts that will support organizations building their transformation team.
Other HSTRC Tools
The development and planning of a care transformation initiative requires buy-in and participation from all staff to ensure that processes run smoothly and that tools/resources are utilized appropriately. As such, it is also important that all staff have an opportunity to include their perspectives when thinking through the program elements to account for how different types of roles can impact success and be impacted by the changes. A useful way to detail the new roles and responsibilities to accomplish the program’s goals is to document the team’s workflows. Workflow documentation outlines key roles and responsibilities in coordinating and delivering care for the program’s patient population. The documentation should include detailed steps carried out for an individual patient including by whom within the organization’s staff. A best practice is to describe each staff member’s ‘swim lane’ to clearly show their role, and when they will be called upon to support the program functions. A ‘swim lane’ diagram visually distinguishes shared and individual responsibilities for each part of the program’s process. This allows staff to fully understand when, how, and with whom they are expected to be involved.
Establishing a program that addresses complex care requires coordinated collaboration amongst multiple organizations. While partnerships may use existing agreements as a vehicle to establish ownership of tasks, there may come a time when two parties need to enter into a more formal, contractual relationship. As such, the parties may need to draft and agree to a formal memorandum of understanding (MOU) that serves as a precursor to a legally binding contract. An MOU is intended to indicate the willingness of two or more parties to work together in partnership. The agreement allows each party to clearly state their objectives and expectations for themselves and each other. This tool is designed to help you understand the various components of an MOU and provide examples of language to serve as a starting point for drafting your MOU. It will also note other types of agreements that you may need.
As you are planning and implementing a care management program to address the needs of complex patient populations, you may wish to leverage a software solution to enable your intervention to have the greatest impact. However, there are hundreds of health management technology vendors available in the market. Selecting one vendor that is the right for what your organization needs can be a daunting task. Using an organized, clear approach to evaluate your organization’s needs and the options available can help vendor decision-making considerably. This resource lays out criteria for evaluating technology vendors and questions for consideration internally or for discussion with a vendor that will help your organization narrow the list of potential partners and ultimately make their vendor selection. This template can help you think through your current needs, desired features and functions, expectations, and items to follow up on.