CHRISTUS Quality Network

CHRISTUS Health operates a clinically integrated network called CHRISTUS Quality Network (CQN). CQN negotiates on behalf of its partners to enter into value-based contracts with commercial health plans with incentive payments tied to improving quality outcomes and cost-efficiency. 

What is a Clinically Integrated Network (CIN)?

A clinically integrated network (CIN) is an aligned delivery model with collaboration amongst clinicians, hospitals, and health plans. Network partners engage in efforts to coordinate care, improve quality outcomes and reduce costs associated with unnecessary or inappropriate care. In a CIN, independent practices can maintain their independence and still participate in value-based contracts through a larger network. 

Why should I join the CHRISTUS Quality Network (CQN)?

The CQN has value-based contracts with a minimum panel size ranging from 1,000 – 5,000 patients with the health plan. We have 2,000 clinical network partners who care for 132,000 patients across Texas and Louisiana. Our dedicated team provides support and expertise to ensure our network partners succeed. In addition, we update our network partners on their performance, share actionable reports and insights, and provide data analytic tools.

Our centralized team of care coordinators, nurse navigators, and risk adjustment coders will work alongside your practice in a team-based approach. We have been successful in improving outcomes and reducing unnecessary costs for patients.

  • Care coordinators outreach to patients to close the care gap and schedule preventative services
  • Nurse navigators identify, outreach, and support high-risk patients to lower ED utilization
  • Partnerships with community-based resources help address social determinants of health 
  • Risk adjustment coders help practices capture chronic conditions to reflect the acuity of your patients so the CIN has an appropriate budget to care for patients

What types of incentive payments are part of value-based contracts?

Our value-based contracts have varying incentive models. The most common payments include care management fees, quality bonuses, and shared savings.

  • Care management fees – per member per month (PMPM) payment to support the practice 
  • Quality bonus – bonus program that rewards practices for meeting quality metrics 
  • Shared savings – large bonus opportunity tied to meeting quality and financial benchmarks 

What are the financial risks to joining?

There are no fees to join the CHRISTUS Quality Network and we have a strong history of success. CQN has been successful year over year in achieving shared savings since 2017 and creating value for our network partners and health plans. The CQN shares all incentive payments with our network partners based on the practice’s performance and panel size.

Financial Performance of CIN:

 CQN Incentive Payments Summary  2017  2018  2019
Care Management Fees  $1,264,000  $1,855,000  $3,749,000
 Quality Bonus    $83,000  $119,000
 Shared Savings  $519,000  $627,000  $3,657,000
 Average Annual Pay to Network Partners*  $10,000 - $180,000

What are the quality measures?

Each value-based contract has its own set of quality measures with different targets. They are based on HEDIS metrics and focus on:

 Controlling A1C Levels  Fall Screening
 Flu Immunization  Tobacco Use Screening
 Screening for Depression and Follow-up Plan  Colorectal Cancer Screening
 Breast Cancer Screening  Controlling High Blood Pressure
 Depression Remission at 12 Months  Statin Therapy for Cardiovascular Disease

What contracts are available in CHRISTUS Quality Network (CQN)?

CHRISTUS Quality Network spans three states, Texas, Louisiana, and New Mexico. Our value-based contracts are with Humana, Blue Cross Blue Shield, CHRISTUS Health Plan, and others.

What are the expectations once involved in CQN?

The CIN is made up of highly motivated, committed, and exceptional clinicians. They want to align with like-minded clinical partners who share their dedication to the triple aim. Throughout the year, we host meetings for our network partners to attend at least 75 percent. Our goal is to reward practices for providing high-quality, cost-effective care to patients.

We expect network partners to collaborate, communicate and commit to the triple aim of healthcare: better patient experience, high-quality outcomes, and providing cost-effective care.