Are We Morally Failing Our Seniors?



Posted on

Jan 26, 2023


Minnesota - Twin Cities Metro Area

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Joel Theisen, Lifespark CEO  and guest, Anne Tumlinson suggest that we have not embraced the opportunity within value-based care to produce meaningful outcomes – the payment model is not the core problem, value-based is not the enemy. We need accountability, leadership, creativity, and commitment to transform health care – and Anne and Joel cover a lot of that ground in this podcast.

Putting all of that discussion aside, they take a step back and look at who we are really trying to serve. For Lifespark and Anne’s work with ATI and Daughterhood, that’s seniors and their families. Are we morally failing them? There’s good intent by many in health care to try to serve seniors better and lower long-term costs but both and Anne and Joel question if we are doing it the right way and they discuss this in the podcast. Anne looks at this through the lens of both a daughter and a policy maker and believes there’s an unbelievable amount of suffering that’s happening as a result of the disconnected experience people face. Families are creating their own completely unique and separate system of care delivery on its own, without any help, and managing it. “It’s ridiculously inefficient,” says Anne. “And it makes me uncomfortable morally.”

Joel and Anne get serious in this podcast about what we need to accomplish, specifically, to create better systems of care. Having full actual risk, not just parts of the ‘value-based’ craze of caring for populations but going at-risk to serve them fully and produce measurable results is the only way to move the needle. It’s more than a monthly allocation per plan per member but total global risk for the individual. When you do that, you look at who you serve a little differently – you see them as a person beyond their diagnosis or episode to what will help them long-term and use their health plan to give them wellness, not sickness, to keep them thriving.

PACE and Medicare Advantage plans have pieces of what people need but they aren’t accessible by all seniors. Anne and Joel get candid about how there are a lot of pathways today that exist to put together all of these models and funding streams to make it available for every senior – not just the rich, poor, healthiest or sickest, but all.  The good news that should perk the ears of health care execs listening – there are financial rewards for being human in health care.

This podcast was full of interesting nuggets and takeaways. Regardless of what you believe or how you think health care delivery should be solved, the message by Anne and Joel was loud and clear: we have only a few years to figure this out and make the investments we need right now to serve the senior population. And if we don’t, we will continue to fail our seniors. Even the biggest organizations like Amazon and CVS will soon find, there’s no value in that.

Listen to our latest podcast and subscribe to get the latest episode delivered right to your inbox and explore our other podcasts with Steve Gillon and Richard Leider. And if you’re ready to get serious on serving seniors, let’s partner. Aging Magnificently will take all of us.

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The Difference is Whole Person Senior Care Only from Lifespark!We all want a fulfilling life with the people and passions that bring us the most joy. Discovering those opportunities and helping them come alive for seniors and their families is what we do at Lifespark.Our approachisprovento help seniors live healthy and independent longer.The Ultimate In Home Care for Living Healthier and Happier