HELENA — A Helena-based nonprofit has received a $15 million federal contract to help improve the quality of health care in Montana and beyond.
U.S. Sens. Jon Tester and Steve Daines announced this week that Mountain-Pacific Quality Health had received the five-year contract from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Mountain-Pacific operates in Montana, Wyoming, Alaska, Hawaii and the U.S. territories of Guam, American Samoa and the Northern Mariana Islands. It is one of 14 Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organizations across the country that work with health care providers and patients to improve the quality of health care.
“It’s money we are going to be able to use to continue the work that we’ve done for many years, in partnership with the federal government,” said Sara Medley, Mountain-Pacific’s CEO.
The organization’s initiatives include reducing unnecessary opioid use, working with nursing homes to ensure residents receive quality care and creating community coalitions to address health care needs.
Medley said this contract will include strict evaluation targets that Mountain-Pacific must meet in order to receive the full amount of funding. She said they are honored to continue their work.
“One of the things that I’d like to see us do as part of this is getting the patient at the center of the conversation in health care – so really making the patient involved in all the decisions that relate to what’s happening to them,” she said.
Medley said there had been a gap of several months between the end of their previous contract and the announcement of this funding, which started Nov. 8.
When the contract was announced, Daines and Tester praised the work Mountain-Pacific has done.
“Mountain-Pacific Quality Health is critical to helping folks in Montana receive the highest quality care at the lowest cost,” Tester said in a statement. “Every Montanan deserves access to the services that will keep them healthy and safe, and these funds will help Mountain-Pacific ensure Montana’s health care system continues to work for our seniors.”
“I’m glad to see such an important organization like Mountain-Pacific Quality Health in Montana receive additional funding to support the work they do,” said Daines in a statement. “I’ll continue to work with Mountain-Pacific as they grow their organization and their impact on Montana for years to come.”
Mountain-Pacific currently has about 100 employees working around its region.