Alliance announces OFM selection of WA-APCD lead organization
Today, the Alliance learned it has not been chosen by the Washington State Office of Financial Management (OFM) as the Apparently Successful Bidder to serve as the Lead Organization for the Washington State All-Payer Claims Database (WA-APCD). The Alliance was a finalist during the procurement process that was completed on July 15th. The announcement, which was made today, is the culmination of a process that began with the passage in May 2015 of the bill establishing the WA-APCD. OFM selected the Center for Health Systems Effectiveness at Oregon Health & Sciences University as the Lead Organization. OHSU will partner with Onpoint Health Data, based in Portland, ME, as its Data Vendor.
We are, of course, very disappointed with this decision. We believe that the State would be best served by working with organizations based in Washington and capitalizing on the Alliance’s existing voluntary APCD infrastructure and relationships, which would have allowed us to more quickly establish the legislatively-mandated WA-APCD. Our proposed solution was to build upon the existing, strong foundation that the Alliance and our partner Milliman have created with Alliance membership support over a decade. We are not supportive of duplicating efforts and starting the mandated APCD from scratch, which will undoubtedly be more expensive for the WA-APCD. We made a strong offer that provided the state with several advantages including:
- Available data. The Alliance has been operating as the state’s voluntary APCD since 2007. We already have a robust database and accompanying infrastructure that we proposed to leverage on day one of WA-APCD implementation.
- Experienced organizations. The Alliance and Milliman have worked together for ten years. We live and work here and, like each Alliance member, are invested in improving Washington’s health care system.
- Deep insight into the Washington health care environment. We are very familiar with the health care market in Washington and have strong working relationships with the major stakeholders, including almost all of the mandated data suppliers and many self-funded ones as well.
- Intimate knowledge of the Washington State Common Measure Set. We have deep experience with the Washington State Common Measure Set, not only in producing results but also in the process that builds the measure set itself.
- Nationally recognized excellence. Because of the Alliance’s voluntary APCD and public reporting, the state has already earned an “A” for provider quality reporting for the past two years from the Health Care Improvement Incentives Institute. Washington was only one of three states to be awarded an A in the most recent rankings.
- Potential financial contribution from the Alliance. The Alliance Board made a commitment to consider a short-term financial contribution to jump start WA-APCD with no required payback if the Alliance was selected as the Lead Organization. The Board made this commitment because they believe strongly in the importance of creating a transparency tool that combines quality and cost, and they believe that building upon the existing infrastructure of the Alliance voluntary APCD makes the most sense to accomplish this. They recognize that funds are limited for the start-up of WA-APCD and wanted to show their full support.
I want to emphasize that the Alliance’s work and mission will continue as it has for the past decade. The Alliance, along with the support of current data suppliers, will continue to leverage the voluntary APCD as a public resource to enhance the already ground-breaking and widely accepted products and services produced by the Alliance. We are preparing to launch a new Community Checkup website this fall, which will feature enhanced interactivity and data visualizations. At the same time, we will be releasing the second set of results for the Washington State Common Measure Set. We have a new version of our Different Regions, Different Care report scheduled to be released in two weeks, and another report on Choosing Wisely™ results for the state to follow shortly. We will continue to produce the reports and analyses that have earned the Alliance a national reputation for promoting transparency. And we will continue in our important role as convener as we strive to move data from mere information to action.
We appreciate your ongoing support for our work.