For Immediate Release - August 28, 2017

MassHealth Selects 26 Community Partners to Help Improve Health Care for 60,000 Members

BOSTON – The Baker-Polito Administration announces the selection of 26 organizations to enter into contract negotiations as designated Community Partners, the next step of the rollout of the MassHealth Accountable Care Organization (ACO) program. These community-based health care and human service organizations will partner with the ACOs to integrate and improve member health outcomes of approximately 60,000 MassHealth members with complex long term medical and/or behavioral health needs.

“Integrating the full health care needs of MassHealth members with complex health conditions is one of the most important goals in restructuring our MassHealth program,” said Massachusetts Secretary for Health and Human Services Marylou Sudders. “Community Partners are central in meeting the physical, behavioral and long term care needs of MassHealth members, including individuals with disabilities, mental illness, substance misuse disorders and co-occurring disorders.”

“The Community Partners are experts in supporting members with disabilities or significant behavioral health needs in the community setting,” said Dan Tsai, Assistant Secretary for MassHealth. “These entities will receive over half a billion dollars in investments over five years to support their capacity to care for members in partnership with the ACOs. This level of investment in the community based system is unprecedented across the country and is made possible by our federal 1115 waiver.”

Community Partners support MassHealth’s commitment to:

  • Improve member experience, continuity and quality of care,
  • Promote collaboration to address social determinants that impact an individual’s stability and wellbeing,
  • Foster communications and care coordination across health, behavioral health, long term services and supports, and social service needs,
  • Invest in the systems capability of these community based organizations  (e.g., information technology and data analytics),
  • Support individuals with disabilities to live in the community independently, and
  • Provide appropriate treatment and recovery support for individuals with complex behavioral health conditions.  

“We are very enthusiastic about the pool of Community Partners selected for contract negotiation. Each represent several strong community based entities coming together in partnerships,” said Ipek Demirsoy, MassHealth Chief of Payment and Care Delivery Innovation. “These organizations truly understand our complex member populations and will engage them in a culturally and linguistically appropriate manner.”

Community Partners will receive funds for care coordination activities and to support infrastructure and capacity building.  Significant investments will be made under the Community Partner model, including providing $401 million over 5 years to behavioral health organizations to provide comprehensive care management to support adults with serious mental illness and/or substance misuse disorders and $145 million over five years to organizations providing care coordination support for people with complex long-term services and support needs. This includes members with physical disabilities, traumatic brain injury, intellectual or developmental disabilities and others.

The Baker-Polito Administration recently announced that 17 health care organizations across the state have executed agreements to participate as MassHealth’s ACOs. Effective March 1, 2018, ACOs, networks of physicians, hospitals and other community based health care providers, will be financially accountable for cost, quality, and member experience for their MassHealth patients.   Under the state’s five-year innovative 1115 Medicaid waiver, MassHealth will receive $1.8 billion in new federal investments to restructure the current MassHealth system.

MassHealth anticipates completing contract negotiations with Community Partners by early November 2017 with implementation of the program in summer of 2018.   The following 26 organizations, chosen from a total of 34 community organizations, have been selected for contract negotiations:

Long Term Services and Supports Community Partners:

  1. Alternatives Unlimited
  2. Boston LTSS Community Partners
  3. Boston Medical Center
  4. Elder Services of Merrimack Valley
  5. Family Service Association
  6. Innovative Care Partners
  7. Seven Hills Family Services, Inc.
  8. WestMass Elder Care

Behavioral Health Community Partners:

  1. Behavioral Health Network, Inc.
  2. Behavioral Health Partners of Metrowest, LLC
  3. Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program, Inc.
  4. Clinical Support Options, Inc.
  5. Community Counseling of Bristol County, Inc.
  6. Community Healthlink, Inc.
  7. Eastern Massachusetts Community Partners, LLC 
  8. Eliot Community Human Services, Inc.
  9. High Point Treatment Center, Inc.
  10. Innovative Care Partners, LLC
  11. Lowell Community Health Center, Inc.
  12. Northeast Behavioral Health Corporation, dba Lahey Behavioral Health Services
  13. Riverside Community Care, Inc.
  14. South Shore Mental Health Center, Inc.
  15. Southeast Community Partnership, LLC
  16. Stanley Street Treatment and Resources, Inc.
  17. The Bridge of Central Massachusetts, Inc.
  18. The Brien Center for Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, Inc.

Community Partners will also partner with Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) to support their members with complex needs. MassHealth is in the process of re-procuring its MCOs and anticipates announcing the selection of MCO plans for contracting in early October, 2017. The new MCO program will be fully implemented in March 2018 alongside ACO implementation.