The National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD) announced the formation of its Health Systems Integration (HSI) team. As the nation continues to tackle a massive renovation of its health care and public health systems, NASTAD’s HSI team will work to ensure that state HIV and viral hepatitis programs are maximizing new partnerships and remain well-positioned to deliver the best possible services.
“We are at a critical point in time where we are experiencing the most far-reaching transformation in our nation’s health care system in the last 50 years,” noted NASTAD Executive Director Murray Penner. “And we need delivery approaches, partnerships and revenue streams that align with this transformation and that sustain services, improve outcomes for people living with and at risk for HIV and hepatitis C infection and reduce the cost of health care.”
This new program expands upon NASTAD’s work to help state and territorial HIV and viral hepatitis programs maximize financing and coverage opportunities in a rapidly evolving public health landscape. The HSI program has evolved out of NASTAD’s Affordable Care Act (ACA) work, and in addition to continued ACA implementation, includes a range of sustainability and payment and delivery reform activities and focus areas. The HSI team will support the efforts of health departments on four priority fronts:
- Insurance Coverage and Access. As health departments continue to maximize opportunities provided by health reform, the HSI team leads NASTAD’s work on ACA education, outreach, and enrollment. The team works to support AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) and other HIV and viral hepatitis program efforts to optimize insurance access. These efforts include supporting plan designs that are inclusive of HIV and viral hepatitis medications, services, and providers and identifying payment and delivery system reform models that include community-based public health services.
- Provider Sustainability. A vibrant provider community is integral to ensuring access to HIV, HCV and drug user health services. The HSI team works with state health departments to build the capacity of providers to remain relevant in a changing health care landscape, pursue contracts and other partnerships with public and private payers, and pursue new streams of revenue to sustain services.
- Insurance Claims Data. The universe of health information is vast and expansive. Utilizing private insurance and Medicaid claims data can significantly improve the ability of states to measure HIV and viral hepatitis outcomes and progress. The HSI team works with state HIV programs to leverage insurance claims data to revolutionize HIV and viral hepatitis services delivery.
- PrEP Financing. While pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is a promising tool in the fight to end the HIV epidemic, its uptake by the most vulnerable communities is tied to the extent to which health departments can build sustainable financing mechanisms to provide access to this treatment and its related ancillary services. Our expertise in prescription drug pricing, insurance navigation, and access to care and treatment uniquely qualifies NASTAD for this body of work.
“Health departments offer significant value to other health systems regarding the effective management of populations living with HIV and/or HCV,” commented Amy Killelea, Director of NASTAD’s new Health Systems Integration team. “Building upon NASTAD’s work supporting states with ACA implementation, health system transformation and payment delivery reform activities, our new HSI team will work to bridge public health and health care systems to ensure that all systems and payers are effective partners in ending the HIV and hepatitis C epidemics.”