AHCCCS Whole Person Care Initiative (WPCI)
There is growing national attention on the impact social factors can have on a person’s health and well-being. It is believed that a person’s socio-economic status, behaviors, and physical environment contribute more to health outcomes than access to health care. AHCCCS understands these complex issues and has historically worked to provide housing, employment, criminal justice, non-emergency transportation as well as home and community-based services interventions to our members, which facilitates the appropriate utilization of Medicaid services, while also utilizing a broad range of funding sources for services that are not available under the Arizona Medicaid program.
AHCCCS announces the Whole Person Care Initiative to augment our options to address social risk factors. We welcome our community’s continued partnership as we strive to improve the health of Arizonans. Additional programmatic details will be released over the next several months. If you would like to sign up for email notifications when new information please click the link above.
If you would like to provide AHCCCS with input on the Whole Person Care Initiative please email us at WPCI@azahcccs.gov. Please note, this email address is only used for sending feedback to AHCCCS on the initiative and you will not receive a reply.
Health Current Selects NowPow as Technology Partner to Implement a Statewide Social Determinants of Health Closed Loop Referral System in Arizona
February 17, 2021
AHCCCS, Arizona’s Health Information Exchange and 2-1-1 Arizona Team Up to Address Social Determinants of Health (SDOH) Screening & Referrals
Health Current, Arizona’s health information exchange (HIE), today announced the selection of NowPow as the vendor of choice for Arizona’s closed loop referral system (CLRS) to address social determinants of health (SDOH) needs in Arizona. By connecting healthcare and community service providers on a single statewide technology platform, this new service promises to streamline the referral process, foster easier access to vital services, and provide confirmation when social services are delivered.
The Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS), Arizona’s state Medicaid agency, launched its Whole Person Care Initiative (WPCI) to focus on the social factors that have an impact on individual health and well-being, such as housing, employment, criminal justice, non-emergency transportation, and home and community-based services interventions. As part of the WPCI strategy, AHCCCS partnered with Health Current to implement a technology solution that can support providers, health plans, community-based organizations (CBOs) and community stakeholders in meeting the social service needs of Arizonans.
In concert with AHCCCS, and in collaboration with 2-1-1 Arizona, which is operated by Crisis Response Network (CRN), Health Current embarked on an extensive evaluation process of available technology vendors who possess the capabilities to develop a single, statewide solution that:
“We are thrilled to work with NowPow on this critically important service that promises to better connect healthcare providers and community-based organizations in Arizona,” said Melissa Kotrys, CEO of Health Current. “The robust capabilities of their technology solution, combined with their proven track record of success in other states, made NowPow an ideal collaborator for this initiative,” she added.
Arizona’s healthcare leadership at the state-level echoes this sentiment. “The SDOH closed loop referral system is foundational to our Whole Person Care Initiative,” said AHCCCS Director, Jami Snyder. “As Arizona’s trusted HIE, Health Current is the ideal community organization to implement this necessary technology. And by Health Current and 2-1-1 Arizona joining forces, we see this as a real opportunity to link current community resources with individuals’ social needs, ultimately resulting in improved member health and wellness,” adds Snyder.
AHCCCS to Align Whole Person Care Initiative Strategies With Existing Program
September 17, 2020
AHCCCS is required to renew its 1115 Waiver with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) every five years and will submit its waiver renewal request in December 2020. The waiver renewal request is the agency’s proposal to CMS outlining new and ongoing programmatic authorities. The COVID-19 public health emergency has shifted the agency’s focus to maintaining current services for our members and providers. Given that, and anticipated budgetary limitations, AHCCCS has elected to shift course and focus on a series of smaller-scale, cost-effective initiatives within the parameters of the existing Medicaid program and refrain, at this time, from the pursuit of a broader Whole Person Care Initiative in conjunction with its five-year 1115 Waiver renewal.
For example, AHCCCS and Health Current, Arizona’s Health Information Exchange (HIE), are sourcing a new technical tool for providers— a closed-loop referral system so providers can identify social risk factors and manage referrals to community based agencies who can address those specific needs.
Whole Person Care Initiative to Focus on Additional Factors That Impact Wellness
November 22, 2019
Growing national attention on social determinants of health (the impact that social factors have on a person’s health and well-being) indicates that socio-economic status, behaviors, and physical environment contribute more to health outcomes than access to health care. AHCCCS has addressed these complex issues through efforts to provide housing, employment, criminal justice, non-emergency transportation and home and community-based services interventions for members, using Medicaid-covered services while also relying on a broad range of funding sources for services and supports not available under the Arizona Medicaid program.
We know, too, that more can be done. As we continue to explore opportunities that support whole person health care, we are engaging community stakeholders who have expressed interest in augmenting our ability to address:
- Transitional housing, particularly for individuals leaving a correctional facility; those being discharged from a behavioral health inpatient stay; and individuals experiencing chronic homelessness.
- Non-medical transportation with a focus on access to healthy food and employment navigation services.
- Social isolation that can impact individuals who receive Arizona Long Term Care System (ALTCS) services in their own homes including, but not limited to, peer support programs.