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|Graduate School: Harvard Medical School
Undergraduate School: Harvard University
Areas of interest: Public Health Finance
Mentors: Renee Landers, Suffolk University Law School and Ravi Parikh, Harvard Medical School Student
Placement: Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services
Supervisor: Oliver Rothschild, Medicaid Chief of Staff
Project description: This summer Ifedayo worked at the Executive Office of Health and Human Services in the Office of Medicaid (MassHealth). MassHealth provides public insurance for low- to medium-income residents of Massachusetts. He worked on an initiative to design and implement an alternative payment methodology that would pay providers who served Medicaid patients in a manner that differed from the current fee for service system. Alternative payment methodologies such as the Blue Cross Blue Shield Alternative Quality Contract and the CMS Innovation Centre Pioneer ACO models are popular strategies to combat the low quality and high cost that have been linked to fee for service payment systems. The goal of MassHealth was to design a payment system that provided providers with enough flexibility to improve access to primary care, to promote patient experience with care coordination and management, to improve value and to integrate behavioral health care with primary care.
Ifedayo worked on various aspects of the payment initiative. He interviewed executive leaders in hospital organizations across Massachusetts to assess their current experiences with alternative payment methodologies and to identify features they had found successful. He wrote up my results and recommendation in a white paper. He performed a review of other Medicaid agencies across America that had adopted alternative payment methodologies in order to generate best practices on risk management, IT strategy and clinical data management relationships. He also conducted an analysis on quality metrics used in other alternative payment methodologies.
Ifedayo says that I enjoyed my experience working at MassHealth. As a future doctor, I have always been interested in understanding how the design of healthcare systems and payment methodologies translate into better healthcare for patients. It was exciting to watch academic research and stakeholder perspectives implemented into concrete policies that would change the lives of many. I was particularly glad that I got to work at an institution, which focuses on providing health care to low-income individuals. It was heartening to know that all the hard work of the team would translate into better care for undeserved populations. The weekly sessions that the Rappaport fellowship provides allowed me to build relationships with other fellows and explore parts of Boston that I had never seen before, adding tremendous value to my internship experience.