Healthcare Changes

NVRHhealthcareST. JOHNSBURY - Changes may be coming to health care policies in Vermont after nearly two years of negotiations.

The federal government has approved an “all-payer waiver” which will change the way healthcare providers are reimbursed.

The new waiver would pay healthcare providers a set amount for care, rather than paying them for each individual procedure or test.

“The idea is to move from fee for service payment in health care to some other payment methodology. People describe it as going from volume to value. I’ve never felt we were interested in just volume and not value, but the payment methodology might change,” says NVRH CEO, Paul Bengtson.

The waiver seeks to combat the growing cost of health care across Vermont.

“The immediate benefit is if Vermont doesn’t sign off on this particular agreement it is scheduled to loose quite a few federal dollars that will cause problems for the state,” says Bengtson.

Doctors, hospitals, and consumers across the state will have three weeks to give their input on the waiver. The Green Mountain Care Board will be holding public meetings to discuss the waiver before they decide if they will approve it or not.

Vermont lawmakers say they think that this waiver may be a great opportunity for Vermonters. If the waiver is approved the implementation is expected to start in January 2017 and span over the next six years.

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