Even champions of an advanced primary care (APC) model likely can’t do it alone. 

Adopting an APC model without the support of key stakeholders — including employees — will inhibit implementation and reduce the model’s overall effectiveness. 

Consensus building is hard work, so we hope the following Q&A gives you some valuable tools to develop the necessary buy-in across your organization. Here’s our chat with Vera’s own Lindsey Gregerson.

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Q: How can you create internal champions (and positive momentum) early on?

Lindsey: I think it's really helpful [for APC champions] to find your allies and be attentive to who those people are. Collect them along the journey to be your teammates and to help deploy the APC model. 

Because it is never going to be a decision that's made in a vacuum. There's usually several stakeholders involved, and it will need to be a team effort in most cases.

Q: What are some strategies to help build consensus?

Lindsey: First, identify your organization's key stakeholders, decision-making process, and criteria. What do different members of your executive team care most about? Is it ROI? Is it attracting and retaining great talent? Perhaps it's just offering wonderful health and wellness benefits and making sure your employees have a healthy place to come to work. 

Work to understand the priorities and pain points of each of the key stakeholders within your organization. What information do they use to make decisions about benefits or financial investments?

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After you gather information, partner with a consultant or a vendor to get the data you need to support making the case to the different internal stakeholders. 

I also encourage people to experience a Vera care center first hand — whether it’s an in-person or virtual tour or an annual health evaluation. Being able to relay that immediate experience really helps get more people to appreciate the value.

Q: Who are the main stakeholders who must buy-in to APC for it to be successful?

Lindsey: Each employer organization is structured a little bit differently, but there's definitely some consistent players we see across most employers. That is often the head of HR or in some cases, the CFO. Or in public entities, there's often a procurement officer leader that's in charge of helping make some of those financial decisions around an investment like a care center focused on primary care benefits.

We tend to work closely with the benefits team, which might be an HR director or benefits manager who would be involved in the day-to-day care center operations and would be our long-term contact in many cases. And there's also a technical evaluator or benefits consultant at times — someone inside or outside the organization who might be helping an employer make strategic recommendations each year around plan design or specific goals they have and focused on reducing the total cost of care and improving health outcomes. 

Q: Why are the primary stakeholders essential to the APC buy-in process?

Lindsey: Adopting an APC model needs an executive-level sponsor to be a champion of the care center and the benefit package — often through their own use. We’ve seen those kinds of examples as a really successful strategy. 

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It’s helpful when these stakeholders share personal testimonies of their care center experience with employees and continue to stay involved with their benefits team. This helps HR have someone in the organization with the power, authority, and enthusiasm to sway those who are hesitant.  

An HR director or benefits manager is another stakeholder that can be critical in the APC model’s long-term success. These managers are generally spread very thin, so we at Vera do our best to make this type of benefit as turnkey and as simple as possible. And we equip HR managers with reporting services they can share across the organization to demonstrate results. 

Q: What are ways you’ve seen key stakeholders limit the project’s success, even unintentionally?

Lindsey: Not giving the project enough time or attention can really limit the project’s success — whether that’s gaps in communication or hurdles to obtaining claims data if we want to do member outreach. Being a true partner is critical, and having access to information that allows us to sufficiently promote the benefit is critical as well.

Q: Anything else you’d like to mention about the process of consensus building? 

Lindsey: If you're trying to sell people in your organization on an APC solution, it's just like any form of leadership that you may have in any part of your job. 

To get people on board, it takes vision and clarity. Share your vision and share your goals. It takes a lot of relationship building both inside and outside the organization. 

And then — like training for a marathon or building any sort of project plan — it's just about having the milestones, the communication, and the execution to deliver. 

At Vera, we're here as a partner to our clients. This is not a journey they have to take alone. For us, partnering means creating that vision strategy and then executing on it to create a health revolution.

We’re ready when you are.

If you’ve decided to implement an APC model, we’ll help you achieve success by giving you and your team the tools to build ownership across your entire organization, from senior leadership to those implementing the solution.

Learn more about our leading advanced primary care model by downloading our free eBook.

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