Dr Basit Chaudhry on Experiences in the Oncology Care Model and Early Indications of Success

As practices participating in the Oncology Care Model progress in their practice transformation they run into some challenges, such as how to properly analyze claims data, and see early successes, such as improved patient experience, said Basit Chaudhry, MD, PhD, founder of Tuple Health.

What are the biggest challenges practices participating in the Oncology Care Model are running into when analyzing their claims data?
Claims data is interesting because it gives you a good overview of all the touch points the patient's had with the health system. I think the biggest challenge is that because it's generated from a billing process, you have to take that claims data and then turn it into something clinically meaningful in order to manage a population. I think that's the biggest challenge we have with really using claims data in value-based payment in oncology. It's not something people have done before, and there's just a gap between the purpose and the reason the data was generated and what you really need to do with it in order to manage a population of patients.

How are practices participating in the OCM adjusting how they deliver care to improve outcomes?
I think we're seeing a number of really wonderful experiments and a lot of innovation going on in the field. I'm particularly excited of what people are doing around care coordination and care management. You're seeing much more movement toward integrated care, particularly along transitions. So things like really managing patients after they've been in the hospital, trying to enhance access to care after hours; there's been a number of really great efforts that people in the field are putting together around expanding access to care and better coordination.

Are there any early indications of success for practices that had 6-month episode cycles under the OCM?
I think we're seeing a number of practices who, as they're progressing through their practice transformation process, have seen a lot of efficiency gains and improvements in reducing inappropriate hospital utilization, reducing emergency department visits. There's also a lot of quality improvement in terms of the experience of care for patients, particularly on after-hours care. So the convenience of the experience for patients I think has improved and we've heard a great deal about that.
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