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McKesson buys HealthQX for value-based payment tools

HealthQX technology enhances McKesson's ability to help customers transition to value-based care by automating and scaling complex payment models.

Bill Siwicki, Managing Editor, Healthcare IT News

McKesson Health Solutions has acquired IT vendor HealthQX to expand its IT portfolio with HealthQX's ClarityQx value-based payment technology. The HealthQX technology enhances McKesson's ability to help customers transition to value-based care by automating and scaling complex payment models, such as retrospective and prospective bundled payment, McKesson said.

ClarityQx's analytics technologies enable customers to automate retrospective bundled payment models. McKesson intends to pair ClarityQx and its own Episode Management to give give users the ability to automate retrospective bundled payment processes today and move to prospective payment when they are ready, McKesson said.

[Also: 3M unveils new Patient Insights suite, aims to give providers more data to improve in value-based reimbursement]

"The growth of bundled payment is something payers and providers can't ignore," McKesson senior vice president Carolyn Wukitch said. "These new value-based payment analytics, reconciliation, and automation capabilities complement our value-based reimbursement suite because they give our customers the capabilities to prepare for bundled payment."

McKesson last month released a study that found value-based reimbursement has firmly taken hold but that payers and providers are struggling to operationalize some of the fastest growing payment models. Health Catalyst, in a similar study, found that only 3 percent of hospitals have met the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services targets for value-based care.

Bundled payment models, however, are projected to be 17 percent of medical reimbursement by 2021, making it the fastest growing payment model; further, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services now is mandating bundled payment in one out of every five metropolitan areas as part of its goal to make alternative payment 50% of reimbursement by 2018, McKesson said.

[Also: Health execs, providers anticipate profit slide from value-based contracts, KPMG study says]

With the addition of ClarityQx, McKesson offers health plans a more complete portfolio that can automate medical policy, payment policy, value-based reimbursement models, provider management and contract management, McKesson said.

"The integration of our two companies is reflective of our customers' needs to rapidly transition from volume to value-based payments," HealthQX CEO Mark McAdoo added.

Twitter: @SiwickiHealthIT

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