Massachusetts health regulators unanimously approved Mass General Brigham’s plan to slash millions in costs in the first ever performance improvement plan required by the health board in a bid to rein in healthcare costs in the state.
The Massachusetts Health Policy Commission voted to approve Mass General Brigham’s revised plan on Tuesday, which includes greater annual cost cuts than its original proposal submitted in May. The approved plan calls for Mass General Brigham to cut about $128 million in annual costs, a nearly $60 million increase from the original plan.
The system said it will achieve that goal through price reductions, reducing utilization and moving care to lower-cost settings, according to board documents.
Price reductions will result in the greatest savings ($90 million annually) compared with the three other areas the system will target.
Mass General Brigham plans to cut outpatient rates it charges Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Point32Health, and Mass General Brigham Health Plan, formerly AllWays Health Partners.
Part of that outpatient pricing strategy includes converting pricing at its outpatient facility in Waltham to a community hospital rate schedule.
The Massachusetts Health Policy Commission, an agency tasked with monitoring and controlling healthcare spending in the state, required Mass General Brigham to submit a performance improvement plan in January after finding that spending growth at the state’s largest health system was greater than any other provider.
The board said Mass General Brigham’s spending threatened to hamper the state’s ability to meet its benchmark for containing healthcare costs.
Mass General Brigham will be monitored by the commission and will have to submit public and confidential reports on its progress.
The system will begin to implement its plan in October and through March of 2024.