By Nathalie Hardy • Columnist • 

YCCO certified by state

The state has granted the Yamhill County Care Organization final certification as an official Coordinated Care Organization. The new 501(c)3 nonprofit will begin providing managed care services Thursday, Nov. 1. 

While Oregon Health Plan members will just begin receiving new identification cards this week, the changes have been in motion since the Legislature issued a mandate this spring that individual counties each create a plan to achieve the triple aim of improved health in the community, better patient care and reduced health care costs.

The most significant change members will see immediately is assignment of a primary care provider as part of an effort to focus on wellness and preventive care, said YCCO Board Chair Silas Halloran Steiner, director of the Yamhill County Department of Health and Human Services.

Yamhill County Commissioner Kathy George said she was impressed with how cooperatively health care providers and staff have worked together to develop the new YCCO. 

“It’s been very difficult, and there’s been a lot of internal work,” George said. “The people in Yamhill County have really pulled together.”

“We’re excited to provide a local public health insurance option for OHP members and their families,” said Halloran Steiner in a press release. “Local providers and leaders are joining together with a high degree of community cohesion and YCCO member health is our top priority,” he said. 

In addition to managing member care, the organization is tasked with developing a health system and care transformation plan to present to the Oregon Health Authority by January 15,2013. 

YCCO has reserved $500,000, to be matched dollar for dollar by infrastructure partner CareOregon for a total of $1 million. The money will go toward transformation projects at the local level.

The YCCO encompasses representatives of the Willamette Valley Medical Center, Providence Newberg Medical Center, Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Clinic, Physicians Medical Center, Mid Valley Behavioral Care Network, independent physicians, NW Senior and Disability Services, CareOregon, local dentists, local nonprofits, the county health department and elected officials. 

“By bringing together this broad group, we expect to identify ways we can collaborate around health and health care in Yamhill County with the objective of achieving optimum population health, improving care and realizing the cost savings we need,” Halloran Steiner said. “Our first priority is to address the issues of access to care that we know many OHP members have.”

The YCCO’s governance structures includes both community and clinical advisory councils. The objective of the former is to encourage broad community participation, the latter to help advise on the best practices and most effective approaches from a medical perspective.

“We have a diverse group of people who are choosing to serve the community through the community advisory council and the clinical advisory panel,” Halloran Steiner said. “People are coming together to set a visitation for community health and improved access to care. The vision of wellness and the opportunity to make local decisions and decide how we’re going to define health and improve care is what is bringing people together.” 

The community advisory committee will next meet from 6 to 8 pm. Tuesday, Nov. 6, at the Housing Authority of Yamhill County.

 

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