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Winners Announced for IMI 2017 Best Practices Compendium

November 6, 2017

Winners Announced for IMI 2017 Best Practices Compendium

November 7, 2017– WASHINGTON, DC –

The vision of the Institute for Medicaid Innovation (IMI) is to provide independent, unbiased, nonpartisan information and analysis that informs Medicaid policy and improves the health of the nation.

Led by Executive Director Dr. Jennifer Moore, IMI improves the lives of Medicaid enrollees through the development, implementation, and diffusion of innovative and evidence-based models of care that promote quality, value, equity and the engagement of patients, families, and communities.

The Institute for Medicaid Innovation’s Annual Best Practices Compendium represents the most innovative initiatives in Medicaid managed care that address critical health and social issues.

Each year, health plans submit their best practices for consideration of inclusion in this exclusive publication. Through a rigorous process conducted by a panel of independent, national experts, the best practice submissions are reviewed and scored with the top initiatives selected for inclusion in the annual compendium.

The best practices in this year’s publication address important clinical topics including Behavioral Health, Long-Term Care & Transitions of Care, Children’s Health and Oral Health. As you will discover, many of the innovative projects connect clinicians, communities, families, and health plans together in addressing issues of access to high quality care. 

“This year, with Medicaid under threat, all of us on the committee felt a keen responsibility to ensure that the best practices we honored had well-articulated goals that could be tied to specific measurable outcomes,” said Caroline Grossman, chair of the Best Practices Review Committee. “All the programs in the Compendium had a very high bar to reach. They are making a significant difference in the health and well-being of patients, families, and communities.”

For each category (e.g., Behavioral Health), a winner is selected by the review panel, highlighting the “best of the best” for that category. Additionally, an overall award is given to the most innovative best practice across all of the categories. The winners are designated in the compendium.

This year’s winners include:

For “Innovation in Behavior Health”: Forensic ACT program led by Mercy Maricopa Integrated Care, Aetna Medicaid

Their team identifies high-risk individuals who have been arrested and incarcerated who also have serious mental illness who are at increased risk for re-offending and re-incarceration.  Executive Director Dr. Jennifer Moore states, “Through a value-based contract and utilization of a screening assessment tool, one can identify high-risk individuals and provides intensive support, coordination, and assistance.”

For “Innovation in Long-Term Care & Transitions of Care”: Community Transitions program led by UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of Kansas

Due to financial eligibility criteria, many individuals who could benefit from home and community-based services do not qualify and turn to costly nursing facilities. In 2015, the Kansas team implemented an initiative to educate, assess, and support transitions from an institutional setting to the community for those who expressed an interest to returning to the community. To date, over 600 individuals have successfully and safely transitioned back into the community. Firmly stated, “This is a win for Medicaid,” said Dr. Moore.

For “Innovation in Children’s Health”: A Model of Care: Coordination for Healthcare for Complex Kids program led by Meridian Health Plan.

Meridian Health Plan partnered with the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine to support a CMS-funded demonstration project funded by CMS developed by the university to test a model of care new care coordination model for improving the health of children and families affected by chronic conditions like asthma, sickle cell disease, and prematurity. To date, nearly 13,000 families have enrolled, over 5,000 families have been engaged, and 70,000 instances of patient contact have been reported in the pilot, named the Coordination of Healthcare for Complex Kids Program (CHECK Program). “These are impressive and encouraging numbers,” stated Dr. Moore.

For “Innovation Oral Health”:  Affiliated Practice Dental Hygienist program led by UnitedHealthcare Community Health Plan of Arizona

Dr. Jennifer Moore stated, “Often overlooked, this social determinant of health can be overcome.” The initiative is focused on increasing the proportion of enrolled members ages 2-20 who receive an annual dental visit.  Rather than waiting for members to go to a dental provider, the health plan brings a dental team to the member’s medical primary care provider office. “Through this additional care option in the primary care setting, there is an opportunity to identify social determinants of health to make referrals,” affirmed Dr. Moore. 

Beyond the individual winners of the Institute for Medicaid Managed Care Best Practices, the selection committee selects Medicaid’s “Most Innovative” award. This year’s new reigning champion for “Medicaid Managed Care Health Plan Program” goes to the much deserving team at Mercy Maricopa Integrated Care, Aetna Medicaid.

With a large smile, Dr. Jennifer Moore presented each recipient with a trophy and a heartfelt thank you for their courageous and groundbreaking best practices. 

“Social determinants of health are our future.  Without new programs, new data and true reform, our future would be bleak.  I cannot thank Forensic ACT and all of the other winners for their dedication and persistence to achieve positive outcomes. Congratulations,” commented Dr. Moore.

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UnitedHealthcare Plan of Kansas and Arizona;

Winners of the Best Practice award in LTSS and Children's Health respectively


Meridian Health Plan in Partnership with the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine;

Winner of the Best Practice award in Children's Health


Mercy Maricopa Integrated Care Aetna Medicaid; Winner of the Best Practice award in

Behavioral Health and the Most Innovative Best Practice Award