Q&A: Jaime Wissler, Executive Director of One Utah Health Collaborative, on Future Work - Status of Reform

Q&A: Jaime Wissler, Executive Director of One Utah Health Collaborative, on Future Work – Status of Reform

Jaime Wissler is a seasoned public servant with 25 years of experience coordinating with industry partners and local, state and federal governments.

Wissler has worked on various criminal investigations involving healthcare fraud, illegal narcotics, bank fraud, money laundering, wire fraud, identity theft, assault, workplace violence, etc

Wissler is a compassionate leader who is enthusiastic about affordable and equitable health care. His regular integration with marginalized and vulnerable populations throughout his career inspired him to pursue the new role of General Manager of the One Utah Health Collaborative.

State of reform: In your own words, what are the vision and goals of One Utah Health Collaborative?

Jaime Wissler: “One Utah Health Collaborative’s vision is to unite stakeholders to become the national leader in innovative and cost-effective healthcare. As a community-owned value alliance, we aim to reduce the growth of total health care spending in the State of Utah while strengthening affordability, outcomes, and equity. We envision a high quality of life for all Utah residents.

The collaboration is committed to closing disparity gaps based on race, ethnicity, gender, geography or origin. Our initial focus areas of primary care, behavioral health, data infrastructure, coverage and access help us refine our focus to achieve the greatest impact in the early stages. Our success will not happen overnight – Governor Cox and key healthcare stakeholders have carefully laid out a 15-year plan for Utah’s healthcare transformation.

OR: How will the One Utah Health Collaborative address rising health care costs? What information did the analysis of the organization reveal?

JW: “The issues facing health care in our state and our nation are so important and so imperative to our economic future that if we don’t solve them here in Utah, they will for us. Utah is well known for its unparalleled capacity for innovation and collaboration. We plan to lead the way and believe that innovation by the brightest performers in our state is the solution. The Collaborative is not the administrator of innovations; however, we will facilitate the scaling of worthwhile projects to achieve broader reach and cost savings.

Members of the collaboration are already participating in pilot or smaller-scale projects around interoperability, not only to achieve apparent benefits for patient care, but also to reduce redundancy and repeat testing to increase affordability. . Other organizations are coping with rising costs by piloting home care and care delivery programs [that is] accessible to rural Utahns.

OR: How will Utah’s value-based care innovation impact equity and health outcomes?

JW: “This is an important issue and at the heart of our cause. The collaboration exists, in part, to care for our state’s most vulnerable populations — and needs that have never been adequately addressed. COVID-19, researchers and stakeholder conversations have identified barriers to innovation that limit our ability to advance health equity, including lack of interoperability, siled reform efforts, increased administrative costs and rigid payment structures.

The Collaborative’s patient-centered culture will serve as a guide and focal point for innovation. Stakeholders are already seeing momentum with several innovation projects that are improving patient outcomes, including employer efforts around the social determinants of health and the alignment of behavioral and physical health services.

OR: What will be the keys to success for the collaborative and how will these measures of success be measured?

JW: “Governor Cox has brought together brilliant minds, representing all sectors of health care, to create a truly community-owned nonprofit organization. Participants in this effort are motivated by a genuine concern for health equity and the fight against rising costs. Dedicated expert volunteers on the organizing committees have worked tirelessly to produce a roadmap to navigate how the collaboration will function and thrive. These stakeholders and everyday Utahns will serve as stewards of our shared community-owned goals, metrics, priorities, and goals. The structure is in place for success.

Building trust is also essential to our success. We need all stakeholders, whether payer, provider, employer, supplier or government, to build and strengthen trust in this value alliance. The industry feels a common pain with skyrocketing healthcare costs and inequity, motivating industry leaders to take ownership and be part of the solution.

The Collaboration was energized by a recent signing event at the Utah State Capitol, where participants pledged their commitment to realizing our vision for system-wide change and demanded shared stewardship of the success of the collaboration. Establishing trust early on is key to moving forward.

This interview has been edited for clarity and length.

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