by Gerald Zarlengo, MD, Chairman & CEO, COPIC Insurance Company
Featured in the May-July 2021 Colorado Medicine Colorado Medicine.
The COPIC Medical Foundation was established in 1991 to provide charitable financial support to programs and initiatives that address health care issues. Over the years, it has provided more than $10 million to improve patient care and medical outcomes, primarily through grant funding. After conducting a comprehensive strategic planning process in 2019, the Foundation implemented a new goal statement: To be a catalyst in improving the quality of health care delivery by reducing adverse outcomes and supporting innovation.
This goal included a refined focus on a more proactive funding model that centered on data analysis and evaluation of projects for grant consideration for the first 12-18 months. This will allow us to learn from these projects about where our support can have the most significant impact in patient safety and reducing adverse outcomes.
The 2021 funding cycle focused on initiatives designed to reduce fragmentation across care settings. A top concern in patient safety, breakdowns in care from a fragmented health care system can lead to readmissions, missed diagnoses, medication errors, delayed treatment, duplicative testing and procedures, and reduction in quality of care leading to general patient and provider dissatisfaction.
The 2021 cohort of grantees include five incredible organizations of varied size and scope that impact health care in communities across the country. This year, the COPIC Medical Foundation granted a total of $775,000 in grants focused on reducing fragmentation across care settings. Grants support the following projects:
- Children’s Health Fund (New York and national) – A review, update, and dissemination of the successful Referral Management Initiative to incorporate new technologies to enhance care coordination procedures for pediatric populations living in under-resourced communities.
- Children’s Hospital Colorado Foundation (Colorado) – The ImPACT Navigation Hub: A centralized resource hub to coordinate the transition of young adult patients with pediatric onset conditions to adult care.
- Children’s National Medical Center (Washington, D.C.) – Improving coordination of pediatric mental care after psychiatric hospitalization.
- Kansas Healthcare Collaborative (Kansas) – AlignAllHealth: A collaborative tool that combines all health information technology with highly trained clinical and care management staff to support innovative and data-driven care management processes for high-risk patients.
- Mile High Health Alliance (Colorado) – The “Orange Flag” Project: Using historic, predictive and real-time data to inform emergency department personnel of a patient’s high utilization of emergency services to aid in care coordination.
“The COPIC Medical Foundation is proud to support those in health care who are making a difference and pushing innovative ideas forward,” said Meredith Hintze, executive director of the COPIC Medical Foundation. “Our grant funding helps support solutions that can improve patient safety in ways that can be replicated across health care and/or create additional opportunities for expanded applications.”
The Foundation plans to remain focused on funding projects that reduce fragmentation across care settings for its next grant funding cycle. We anticipate that the next Request for Proposals (RFP) will be posted in November 2021 with applications due mid-January 2022. For more details on the COPIC Medical Foundation, please visit www.copicfoundation.org.