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Local Health Departments in a Managed Care Environment
Community-based Collaborative Efforts
E. Liza Greenberg, R.N., M.P.H., Director, Medical Affairs, American
Association of Health Plans, Washington, DC.
One of the opportunities resulting from the increased presence of managed care in communities
is the potential for collaboration between local health departments (LHDs) and managed care organizations (MCOs) on important public health issues that
can have a positive impact on the health of the community.
Liza Greenberg discussed the rationale for health plans becoming involved in such
efforts, noting elements that public health and managed care have in common (e.g., an emphasis
on prevention, an interest in measuring and demonstrating outcomes, etc.) and certain health
plan accreditation requirements that might provide incentives for collaboration.
examples of such collaboration (e.g., the ZAPAsthma project in Atlanta, Georgia), she concluded
by identifying the implications and challenges that the changes in the health care market place
upon public health. These included the need for:
- New roles.
- Self assessments.
- New accountability
- Systems and marketing skills.
- Efforts to educate managed care about public health.
White K, Meyer D. Strengthening the Link between Managed Care and Public Health. HMO
Magazine November/December 1995:36-41.
Breslow L. Public Health and Managed Care: A California Perspective. Health Affairs Spring 1996;15(1)92-8.
Dillenberg J. An Imperative Partnership. Healthplan March/April 1996:71-4.
U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services. Prevention and Managed Care: Opportunities for Managed
Care Organizations, Purchasers of Health Care, and Public Health Agencies. Morbidity and Mortality
Weekly Report November 17, 1995;44(RR-14).
Melek S, Johnson B, Schryver D. Insights into Managed Care—Operational, Legal and Actuarial. MGM
Journal March/April 1997:17-26.
Stewart E. Managed Care Contracting Issues in Integrated Delivery Systems. Journal of Health Care
American Association of Health Plans. Examples of Health Plan Activities. AAHP Fact Sheets—Public
Health. Washington, D.C., n.d.
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