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Chantel Hopper
by Chantel Hopper

Enhancing Continuous Care: Implementing a Principal Care Management Program at Pontchartrain Cancer Center

Pontchartrain Cancer Center Partners with Canopy to Further Streamline Continuous Care Management

Pontchartrain Cancer Center (PCC), a leading community oncology practice with multiple locations in Louisiana, recently partnered with Canopy, the first Intelligent Care Platform for oncology, to further transform patient outcomes through continuous care management and implementing a Principal Care Management (PCM) program.

Within one month of implementing a PCM program and the Canopy Platform, PCC enrolled 60 patients and achieved a 65% opt-in rate, all without hiring additional staff.

>60 patients enrolled in one month

>65% opt-in rate

0 additional hiring needed

In this case study, we explore how PCC and Canopy partnered to successfully implement and streamline PCM workflows to ensure maximum impact without adding burden for staff.

The Case for a Principal Care Management Program in Community Oncology 

With the growing need for continuous patient care, PCC has continuously increased remote care services for patients, despite not being reimbursed for this time and all while navigating staffing challenges following the COVID-19 pandemic.

PCC and other oncology practices—amidst ongoing shifts to reimbursement policy—have adopted programs like Principal and Chronic Care Management (PCM/CCM) to support high-quality care initiatives. These programs are acknowledged by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for their ability to enhance patient care and outcomes while lowering overall healthcare costs. Data reveals that roughly one-third of billable care time attributed to these programs consists of services already being rendered by oncology practices.¹

“So much happens to patients when they’re away from the clinic, and the ability to continuously deliver care for our patients is critical. A Principal Care Management program helps us support remote care and other quality initiatives, but any new care program is resource-intensive, especially when managed manually. That’s where Canopy comes in—a technology partner to help us work smarter, not harder.”
—Kathy Oubre, CEO, Pontchartrain Cancer Center

A comprehensive platform for all the care that happens between visits, Canopy enables practices to identify and prioritize patients who need help between visits, remotely resolve issues with decision-support software, and generate new reimbursement streams from high-quality care.

With Canopy, PCC can prioritize eligible patients for PCM enrollment while also streamlining consent processes and end-to-end care workflows for staff. PCC also leverages Canopy to automatically capture all time spent on billable care activities and automate billing and reporting processes to ensure maximum reimbursement.

Three Tips for Successfully Getting Started with a Principal Care Management Program

What is the implementation science behind PCC’s successful adoption of a new PCM service line and technology vendor? For CEO Kathy Oubre, implementation was a balance of fostering team buy-in and ensuring ongoing program management is scalable—all while driving maximum impact for patients.

“Implementing a new service line like PCM requires a team approach across staff and physicians. When you’re asking staff to take on new responsibilities, you have to be able to demonstrate why these changes are better for patients and you have to arm staff with the resources they need to make this impact happen.”
—Kathy Oubre, CEO, Pontchartrain Cancer Center

PCC staff were able to leverage the Electronic Health Record (EHR) for certain aspects of program requirements, specifically for patient care plan development. However, it quickly became clear that certain manual workflows, like logging calls and managing patient enrollment, weren’t set up to capture all of the staff’s eligible care time, scale in the long run, or maximize enrollment impact.

With Canopy’s intelligent tools for remote triage and program management, PCC deployed a three-step plan for better automating PCM care initiatives for staff while ultimately delivering better quality care for patients who would benefit most.

1. Understanding Care Time: Which Patients Will Benefit Most?

In the first two months of implementation, PCC leveraged Canophy’s triage management tools to automatically capture remote care time across triage staff members and generate analytics to investigate which patients most needed remote care coordination.

From there, PCC staff used Canopy’s program enrollment tools to not only identify all patients who were eligible for program enrollment but also patients who were consistently meeting care time thresholds under program requirements. This groundwork was crucial in helping PCC prioritize enrollment resources for patients who would benefit most.

2. Focusing Efforts: Strategic Patient Enrollment

Leveraging Canopy insights, PCC staff strategically focused their enrollment efforts on patients just starting treatment and those requiring extensive remote care time and coordination. Within just one month, their approach resulted in the enrollment of 60 patients in PCM, achieving an impressive 65% opt-in rate as a result of their targeted patient enrollment efforts.

3. Continuous Evaluation and Resource Focus

Now, the team at PCC is working to scale this targeted enrollment process and continuously evaluate enrolled patients to ensure the program's ongoing relevance and benefits. This ongoing assessment allows for thoughtful allocation of resources, ensuring maximum impact on patient care.

Using Canopy analytics, monthly calls are efficiently distributed among staff, ensuring comprehensive patient coverage. Additionally, PCC staff can run checks to prevent overlaps with other service lines like Transitional Care Management (TCM) episodes, hospice, or home care.

Pontchartrain Cancer Center's journey exemplifies how strategic planning, team commitment, and patient-focused care can lead to transformative outcomes. Through an innovative partnership with Canopy, PCC was able to rapidly transform patient care initiatives and capture reimbursement for this important care, all without hiring additional staff.

Join Our January Webinar

Eager to learn how Pontchartrain Cancer Center built a care management service line from scratch? Register below to join Kathy Oubre and Canopy on Wednesday, January 24th, at 1 PM EST for a webinar on how to get started with PCM and CCM programs.

1. Canopy customer data