Let’s call it a comeback! I haven’t been to Orlando since FLAACOS 2019 because last year was virtual. This time around, it was a nice combination (special thanks to ACO Exhibit Hall’s John and Garrett Schmitt for providing virtual coverage), but it seemed like the majority of the attendees were anxious to see people face-to-face again. Nicole Bradberry’s Welcome Address was followed by Keynote Speaker Dr. Brent Asplin, the President of Village MD. Dr. Asplin pontificated on the direction that value-based care is headed post-pandemic. He felt that one of the biggest challenges is just getting people back into a Value-Based Care (VBC) mindset and re-educating patients and providers. He shared a cartoon by Wiley Miller that I thought was rather poignant:

The reality of our current landscape is that value-based care is continuing to move forward, continuing to build momentum, but if we don’t get through to those who have been affected by today’s anti-science politicized atmosphere, the climb towards value will become significantly steeper.

During lunch, our own Amy Kotch, Maria Nikol, and Mingle Health’s Jeff Iasilli presented, “Empowering Providers: Using Data to Enable Continuous Performance and Quality Improvement.” Amy acted as moderator, while Maria and Jeff fielded questions based on performance and quality. In the end, all three presenters fielded questions from the audience as well as those virtually via the Whova app. Amy, Maria, and Jeff’s focus was on the necessary data components and how best to deliver data to promote the necessary change in care delivered by providers with the goal of moving from fee-for-service to value-based care. Quality metric submission methods have been evolving since the beginning of MSSP and are working their way towards full integration and aligning with Medicare Access and Chip Reauthorization Act (MACRA) requirements. Salient and Mingle believe that ACOs must engage with subject matter experts to encourage empowerment and adoption of best practices to make that move.

Other enjoyable seminars included “The new Stark and Anti-kickback Statute Value-Based Regulations and what this means for entities taking risk,” featuring Kim Busenbark of Wilems Resource Group along with Ed White, Matthew Goldman, and Mike Segal. Kim led the discussion on the new Stark exceptions and Anti-Kickback Safe Harbors against traditional waivers. If you’re looking to succeed in value-based care, and you want to maintain compliance, the Wilems Resource Group team has proven time and time again to be one of the best in our industry.

We also attended “COVID came on like a Tsunami and the world may never be the same,” presented by Tim Koehler of Bluestone Physician Services, Derek Pauley of Citrus ACO, and Bridget Roberts of Physician Group Services. It was moderated by the always-entertaining and highly knowledgeable, Rich Lucibella of Accountable Care Options. In what turned out to be a fun interactive discussion, each panelist discussed their particular views of how COVID has affected them and where they think their respective organizations are headed. What’s most interesting is the fact that each organization faced their own challenges given that they each serve different types of populations. Those who were creative were the most successful, and some feel that we can get back to the way things were, soon…others disagree significantly.

On the last day, Dr. Jack Cochran spoke and signed his book, “Healer, Leader, Partner: Optimizing Physician Leadership to Transform Healthcare,” and FLAACOS 2021 closed out with a panel discussion on national payor value-based contract strategies featuring Ruth Fricke, Ray Parzik, Michael Howell, Tom Nasby, and Larry Jones. Ultimately, it was great to have everyone back, and this venue, the Signa Hotel by Hilton, proved to be a wonderful host site. Finally, congratulations to our two winners of $100 Amazon Gift Cards: Glen Simon II of HCA Healthcare and Emily Dahl of Charm Economics, LLC.

While not connected to value-based care in any way, the Fred Astaire National Dance Championships were held at the same time, so some of the FLAACOS attendees took breaks from their seminars to check out some amazing dancers. Thank you to everyone who put this conference together, and we’ll see you again next autumn!


Ryan Mackman

About the Author

Ryan Mackman, MBA, MHA - Business Consultant

Ryan Mackman has been an ACO business consultant team member with Salient since March 2018. In this role, he acts as a solution trainer, marketing and sales consultant, as well as Value Based Payment strategist. His skillset helps augment Salient’s efforts at the ACO and physician practice level.

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