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Integrated Health Partnerships (IHP)

Minnesota passed health care legislation to improve affordability of health care, expand coverage and improve the overall health of Minnesotans. In addition, Legislature mandated that the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) develop and implement a demonstration testing alternative health care delivery systems, which includes accountable care organizations (ACOs).

This led to the development of IHP, formerly called the Health Care Delivery Systems (HCDS) demonstration, which strives to deliver higher quality and lower cost health care through innovative approaches to care and payment. The first IHPs launched in 2013.

With this program, Minnesota is one of a growing number of states to implement an ACO model in its Medical Assistance (Medicaid) program, with the goal of improving the health of the population and of individual members.

Participation in IHP

The IHP model continues to evolve since its start in 2013. The current IHP model began in 2018, making enhancements to the model and allowing DHS to continue contracting with innovative health care delivery systems to provide high-quality, efficient care to Minnesota’s Medicaid (MA) population. The model includes a Track 1 and Track 2 option. Track 1 is a non-risk bearing contract intended for smaller organizations. Track 2 involves shared risk where participating providers enter into a risk arrangement with DHS, by which they are held financially accountable for the costs and quality of care their Medicaid patients receive. Providers showing an overall savings across their population, while maintaining or improving the quality of care, receive a portion of the savings. Providers who cost more over time may be required to pay back a portion of the losses. 

Additionally, participants in Track 1 and Track 2 receive a population-based payment for care coordination and are required to design an intervention to address specific health care disparities observed in the IHP’s population. This equity intervention is an opportunity for IHPs to innovate and advance efforts such as community partnerships, screening, referral, and care coordination for social needs, and other strategies to meet their populations’ needs. IHPs are focused on a number of different social risk factors, using a variety of methods. For more information, see Health Equity Interventions Summary for Minnesota Integrated Health Partnerships (DHS-8162) (PDF).

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