Colorado State Innovation Model (SIM)
Monthly Newsletter
March, 2016
In This Issue
Health Plans Sign MOU to Integrate Behavioral and Physical Health Care for Coloradans

The Colorado State Innovation Model announced in February that seven of Colorado's health insurers will coordinate with the SIM Office to support efforts that transform the way primary care and behavioral health care are delivered and financially supported in Colorado.

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SIM Office Announces First Cohort of Primary Care Practices

The Colorado SIM Office is pleased to announce the first cohort of primary care practices selected to participate in practice transformation activities through the SIM initiative.  These practices will play an integral role in achieving Colorado SIM's goal of providing access to integrated physical and behavioral health care services in coordinated systems, with value-based payment structures, for 80 percent of Colorado residents by 2019.  By participating in SIM, practices will be provided with a comprehensive practice transformation support package as well as the opportunity to participate in alternative payment models, the goals of which are to simultaneously improve patient outcomes while promoting greater return on investment.

Click here for more information on SIM practice transformation efforts, and to view the list of practices participating in the first cohort
Transforming Clinical Practices Initiative (TCPi) Informational Webinars

TCPi Colorado Practice Transformation Network presents an opportunity for 2,000 clinicians in Colorado to receive practice support as they prepare for new payment models. All physicians -- primary care and specialists --  are encouraged to stay up to date on Medicare payment reform and consider taking advantage of this federally-funded support to help their practice thrive in the evolving health care landscape.

Join TCPi for a weekly informational webinar every Wednesday through March 30 to learn more about the Transforming Clinical Practices Initiative and the Colorado Practice Transformation Network. 

Spreading the Word About Mental Health First Aid Colorado

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) has been cited throughout the development and launch of Colorado SIM as a way to put upstream, public health prevention strategies for behavioral health in action. Hundreds of local public health agencies, community mental health centers, primary care practices, hospitals, schools, law enforcement agencies and more are now using this evidence-based training to help address behavioral health needs in their communities. The program's popularity is impressive, but its supporters see the growth so far as just the beginning. So, if you're not one of the 25,000 certified Mental Health First Aiders in Colorado, what exactly is it all about?
The Mental Health First Aid Colorado (MHFACO) team has put together a short, introductory video explaining why it is important and how to get involved. Click here to watch the video and learn how you can become a lifeline for yourself, a colleague, client, friend or family member in need of support. MHFACO looks forward to partnering with SIM and other interested organizations and individuals to continue to spread MHFA across the state of Colorado. You can also learn more at
Eight Core Competencies for Behavioral Health Providers Working in Primary Care

The Eugene S. Farley Jr. Health Policy Center released its eight core competencies for licensed behavioral health providers working in primary care this month.  The competencies were developed in the Colorado Consensus Conference in November, 2015, and  were revised based on the feedback received from the participants at the conference. Participants then had another opportunity to provide their final comments in December. The competencies refer to the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that allow a behavioral health provider to fulfill their role within an integrated care setting. 

The SIM Workforce Workgroup is working to address issues related to the current and future health care workforce in our state. These competencies provide guidance in this innovative movement toward integration for the behavioral health practitioners venturing into a new work environment. Nearly all of the SIM Workforce Workgroup members participated in establishing the competencies at the conference. 
APMs and Behavioral Health: Register for March LAN Learnings Webinar

Save your spot now for this March 14 webinar that will highlight the current landscape, lessons learned, and best practices in the effective integration of alternative payment models (APMs) and behavioral health services. Panelists from LAN Committed Partners include: 
Apply Now for the Innovations in American Government Awards

Applications are now being accepted for the $100,000 Innovations in American Government Awards.

Offered by Harvard Kennedy School's Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, the Innovations Award is the nation's premier award for the public sector. It recognizes programs that demonstrate creative and effective government at its best.

All units of government - federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial - from all policy areas are eligible to apply for recognition.  

This year, the Ash Center is also once again offering the
Roy and Lila Ash Innovations Award for Public Engagement in Government , a special Innovations Award that will recognize government-led programs that demonstrate novel and effective approaches to increasing public engagement and participation in the governance of towns, cities, states, and the nation.

The winners of the Innovations in American Government Award and the Roy and Lila Ash Award will each receive a $100,000 grant to support replication and dissemination activities in 2017. Top finalists will also receive monetary grants.

Applications and additional information are available at:

In the News

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Press Release

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