The Arizona Partnership for Immunization, or TAPI, was the fourth and final organization awarded an SLHI Innovation Grant in 2014. We were inspired by this organization’s consciousness of the challenges public health departments could face in the future, but especially with its willingness to step in and solve these problems preemptively.
Many public (county) health departments provide immunization services to insured patients, and in 2012 TAPI saw a need to develop billing mechanisms that would link health departments in Arizona to private insurance providers. Thanks to the experience of assisting public health departments in billing insurance companies for immunization services rendered, TAPI recognized that it could be a leader in facilitating this process on a wider scale. Because the Affordable Care Act is meant to strengthen clinical preventative services, public health departments could become in-network providers for services such as family planning, tobacco cessation, and chronic/infectious disease prevention and control, to name just a few. However, providing these services without an efficient billing system would quickly make public health departments unsustainable.
Based on these facts and TAPI’s previous experience, the organization proposed a plan to become the centralized billing system not only for public health immunizations, but also for other public health services. The group’s vision includes a research component that will identify barriers to implementing this process, two statewide stakeholder meetings to present findings and invite collaboration, and the creation of a Workgroup to guide the project for the next two years.
This well thought-out plan, which will overhaul TAPI’s current centralized billing system to incorporate additional billing, impressed us with its thoroughness. We are proud to play a part in this initiative.
To learn more about the Arizona Partnership for Immunization, visit the TAPI website.