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Projects for frail elderly receive federal funding

July 10, 2014
by Lois A. Bowers, Senior Editor
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Improving care for frail, elderly patients or providing support for aging services in the community will be the focus of several of the 39 projects earmarked for up to $360 million in funding through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' (HHS') Health Care Innovation Awards program, designed to accelerate the development of new payment and service delivery models. New funding recipients were announced yesterday, joining others announced in May. Together, the projects span 27 states and the District of Columbia.

“The Health Care Innovation Awards support our ongoing work to drive down healthcare costs while providing high-quality care to [Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services] beneficiaries,” said HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell. “These awards advance innovative solutions in delivering and improving care from all across our nation.”

Efforts to promote the prevention and management of cardiovascular disorders, reduce unnecessary use of emergency departments, improve care coordination in rural areas of the country, promote better care for those living with HIV/AIDS and improve pediatric dental care also among those who will receive funding. Each project is expected to receive $2 million to $23.8 million in funding over three years. Exact funding amounts are expected to be finalized later this summer.

The 39 projects announced yesterday and in May represent the second round of funding from the Health Care Innovation Awards program. The first round was in 2012, when 107 organizations received funding. This time around, CMS specifically sought innovations to rapidly reduce costs for patients in outpatient hospital and post-acute settings, improve care for those with specialized needs, test improved financial and clinical models for specific types of providers, and link clinical care delivery to preventive and population health.

Among programs receiving funding in the second round: