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Quality Innovation Network Contract Awarded to Support Medicare Quality Improvement in Minnesota, Michigan and Wisconsin

Partnership between Stratis Health, MPRO and MetaStar

Published Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has awarded a Quality Innovation Network - Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO) contract to support its work improving health care for Medicare beneficiaries in Minnesota, Michigan, and Wisconsin. The new contract takes effect August 1, 2014.

During the next five years, the QIN-QIO work will focus on health care quality improvement initiatives that include:

  • Improving cardiac health and reducing cardiac health care disparities
  • Reducing disparities in diabetes care
  • Improving prevention coordination through health information technology
  • Reducing health care associated infections in hospitals
  • Reducing health care acquired conditions in nursing homes
  • Improving the coordination of care between health care settings
  • Improving quality through performance-based incentives and reporting programs

Stratis Health of Minnesota, MPRO of Michigan, and MetaStar of Wisconsin are collaborating as the Lake Superior Quality Innovation Network. Stratis Health of Minnesota is the prime contractor with CMS, and MetaStar and MPRO are serving as subcontractors. The three organizations are responsible for QIN-QIO activities in their respective states.

"This regional collaboration of Stratis Health, MPRO, and MetaStar brings together three like-minded organizations with a proven track record in quality improvement to serve Minnesota, Michigan, and Wisconsin," said Jennifer Lundblad, president and CEO of Stratis Health. "Our partnership will draw on one another's strengths and sharing of best practices."

Stratis Health, MPRO, and MetaStar will continue to work with a broad range of providers, communities and partners on data-driven quality initiatives to improve patient safety, reduce harm and improve clinical care and transparency at the local, regional and state level.

The new QIN-QIO contract is part of an effort by CMS to re-structure its QIO program that historically combined Medicare beneficiary quality of care case reviews, discharge/discontinuation of service appeals and quality improvement services at a single organization in each state or territory. Under the new structure, beneficiary quality of care case reviews and appeals have been separated from quality improvement services and cannot be administered by the same organization.

Beginning August 1, 2014, KEPRO, based in Ohio, will handle Medicare quality of care case reviews, discharge/discontinuation of service, and other related review services for Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.

"Although we will no longer be facilitating quality of care case reviews and appeals, all three of our organizations are proud of our past work helping to ensure that Medicare beneficiaries had a voice and access to quality health care," said Bob Yellan, president and CEO, MPRO.

Greg Simmons, MetaStar president and CEO, noted "We're excited to be able to extend our decades of experience as Quality Improvement Organizations and to continue to focus on improving health care for Medicare beneficiaries in our region."

About the QIN-QIO Partnership

Three quality improvement organizations, Stratis Health in Minnesota, MPRO in Michigan, and MetaStar in Wisconsin, have partnered as the Lake Superior Quality Innovation Network to support CMS priorities for health care quality improvement initiatives in each organization's respective states. Together, these organizations will work collaboratively to improve health care for Medicare beneficiaries, share best practices, and maximize efficiencies.

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