This week, guest-writer Amie Joyce, MPH, Vice President of Product Strategy and Management, gives Medicare Advantage Part D (MAPD) plans the low down on product implementation. Read on to get her tips on what to watch out for – and what to ask for – to ensure success with health tech partners as you gear up for new ways to beat cut points in 2019 and beyond.

The Challenges of Health Plan Product Implementation

There are three key challenges that can be pretty common for health plans clients when implementing any new program. We’re really familiar with these kinds of issues, and we’re well-equipped to handle them. However, plans have to be picky about their partners. You have to know what challenges to anticipate and what questions to ask. We’re going to shed some light on that here.

Pitfall #1: Understanding and Communication

It’s a big red flag if you have trouble getting responses or clear answers in the early days of an engagement with a health tech partner in particular. You’d think this would be a given, but plans can be tempted to gloss over this issue as a “startup” problem – it’s not. Particularly when it’s related to the production implementation of a program.

Consider how we handle this:

Product programs are developed through our data science team, and then implemented by our production team. We’re delivering information for outreach every week. There are a lot of different components and work streams support a successful program, as you might expect. The issue here is not really that there are so many moving parts and pieces, but that we are introducing a new level of complexity – new for you, the client. We work even more diligently, thoughtfully, and closely with your teams in the beginning to ensure they understand that layer of complexity and why it’s important. If we get a question, we answer it right away and make sure you know and understand that answer. You will always know what to expect around each turn, and you’ll feel comfortable with the complexity the way we’re comfortable with it – because we work with it all the time and it isn’t new to us.

Pitfall #2: Configurable vs. Stock

The second most common challenge you’re going to face with a health tech partner is getting custom solutions instead of stock, blanket programs. There are absolutely tactics that work across the board, and your partners should help you take advantage of those. Still, your needs, business goals, in-house abilities, and population are actually highly specific to you. A good partner will not only know that, but use it to make your programs and results better.

Here’s what you should expect:

When we are working with a client on their program that involves different types of therapy problems we search out and find the very specific type of information your callers need to have. We have that very, very well defined for adherence, of course, and well defined for our clinical programs – but we monitor, measure, and constantly refine this for your clinical program. We have this process down to an art, so you can rely on us to get it right, and then also rely on us to get it exactly right once we go through the refining phase.

Pitfall #3: Timing

Really the final pitfall plans have to be on the lookout for is related to timing. This is not about the timing of when to launch a program or when to contact members, which your partners should already know without a doubt. Instead, this is about the timespan of implementation.

It should look something like this:

We control and manage everything on our side in such a way that things move as quickly as possible. Part of that – a big part – is anticipating what obstacles you’ll face on your side during an implementation. We mitigate this by having regular, almost constant communications with you, and ensuring everyone on both teams understands the plan and knows what’s expected. We also mitigate it by offering options and alternatives. Sometimes that might be piloting programs with you, so you can get a feel for it and we can learn the exact needs you have without the “pressure” you might otherwise feel of diving in headfirst.

The RxAnte “Special” for MAPD Plans

RxAnte has many clinical and pilot programs, and we have always worked closely – more closely than a lot of tech partners will – with our MAPD clients. We aren’t a typical or commonplace vendor. We are the type of partner who will speak with you in person and in real-time. We spend our time creating programs that meet your needs using the strategies and mechanisms that we know work – like RxEffect and some of our other tools.

Star Ratings measures aren’t special or different, but we believe each of our clients is, which is why we help them use those differences to their advantages. It’s a tough, competitive market out there, and that isn’t going to change any time soon, but we can help by tackling communication head-on, using configurable programs, and overcoming process and timing obstacles together. You can get ahead. We can make sure of it.

Interested in a conversation or a demonstration? Reach out.