Creative efforts improve health care

Stephanie Motter

Affordable health care seems to be top of mind for everyone, lately. It’s no wonder creative health care solutions are popping up out of necessity to control rising costs on both the insurance and provider sides of care. The good news: Creative solutions work.

Direct primary care clinics like  Trailhead and Appleton clinics have cropped up in the Grand Valley. Just a few miles up Interstate Highway 70, mountain communities created Peak Health Alliance to negotiate their own rates with local hospitals.

At the state level, Gov. Jared Polis has tackled high insurance costs through reinsurance. We’re seeing immediate and real savings to some folks in rural parts of Colorado because of reinsurance. Some Monument Health members have realized savings as well. We hope lawmakers will offer solutions to make these reinsurance savings last.   

But I would be remiss not to draw attention to the good work our local team here at Monument Health does behind the scenes to quietly reduce health care costs and provide a higher level of care to our members. After all, Monument Health was started as a creative health care solution to do just that. We take a different approach to health care, one that’s truly integrated and puts our members at the center.

So what is Monument Health, anyway? We’re a team of local professionals who bring doctors, hospitals and insurance companies to the table to achieve better outcomes at lower costs. We look at care models, negotiate with all parties, remove layers of redundancy and cut red tape. We drive down patient costs while increasing the quality of care our members receive.

We’ve provided this coordinated care model on the Western Slope since 2016. We can’t claim we’ve single-handedly fixed the system, but we’re improving health care for the nearly 15,000 members receiving products or services within our network.

We guarantee our members access to primary care providers. In case you need to see a specialist, we ensure you see one sooner. We get rid of costly waste and ensure our doctors are incentivized to treat patients based on quality care and not the number of people they shuffle through their doors.

Thanks to our local team of wellness warriors, Monument Health has helped hundreds of people navigate tricky insurance questions, matched them with doctors they like where often times there’s no copay and educated them on when and when not to make a trip the ER. We also help people with extra services at no extra cost, including behavioral health, diabetes management, smoking cessation and even cooking classes.

All of these creative, integrated efforts translate to better care and lower costs.

There’s still more work to be done, and I know there are more ideas incubating to cut costs. As long as we all remain committed to solve the pressing issue of affordability, I remain hopeful it can and will be achieved. We all need access to high-quality health care in Western Colorado without breaking the bank.