SPH & School of Medicine Partner with AmeriHealth Caritas Louisiana to Create a Rotation in Population Health Management

Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center – New Orleans (LSUHSC-NO) School of Public Health, School of Medicine, and AmeriHealth Caritas Louisiana (ACLA), a Healthy Louisiana Medicaid managed care organization, have partnered to create a unique rotation and learning experience focused on population health management in a managed care setting. The 4-week rotation introduces LSUHSC medical students and residents to the integrated behavioral and physical health model of care in a Medicaid managed care organization. The rotation is designed to provide each participant with actual experiences that illustrate how components of population health management when combined with principles of public health can impact patient outcomes. The program advances LSUHSC’s commitment to providing medical students and residents with unique opportunities that demonstrate the value of combining medical interventions with public health principles to manage and improve the health of populations. Steve Nelson, MD, Dean of the LSUHSC School of Medicine, noted that, “the rotation provides an opportunity to expose our medical students and residents to applied techniques for population health improvement and management outside of the academic setting.” The rotation also directly supports efforts to improve the health of Louisianans by training future healthcare leaders on integrated and multidisciplinary methods used at ACLA for reducing costs, increasing quality, reducing disparities, and improving health outcomes. Peggy Honoré, DHA, Associate Professor at LSUHSC School of Public Health and School of Medicine and rotation director believes that “the rotation is an innovative model to concretely illustrate for medical students and residents the multidisciplinary aspects of population health management that will translate into improved health outcomes”. The initial medical student participating in the program, Daniel McBride, confirms this by stating that the rotation is giving him “a unique perspective on the intersection of health insurance, public health, and individual patient outcomes”.

The medical students and residents gain experiences into ACLA’s clinical operations and have the opportunity for in-depth engagement into their areas of interest. Specific components of population health management that are encouraged for engagement include:

• Integrated Health Care Management (IHCM)
• Quality / HEDIS
• Utilization Management
• Behavioral Health
• Medical Economics
• Value-Based Contracting
• Health Equity

The rotation experience of the initial medical student centered on health equity, integrated health care management, and utilization management as it relates to ACLA patients with Sickle Cell Disease. Dean Smith, PhD, Dean of the LSUHSC School of Public Health sees the value of the rotation as an “example of how to fold public health principles into medical education.” Upon completion of the rotation, the medical students and residents will have a broad understanding of managed care operations and will be better suited to practice in collaboration with others to improve population health outcomes. The rotation also serves as a model for replication nationally as shown by the benefits that stretch across LSUHSC, the population of Louisiana, as well as with insurers and providers. The rotation program is fully funded by ACLA.

Rotation Application (.pdf)