Using Data for Benefit Design

Using Data for Benefit Design


Over the years, MBGH has studied the impact of the value-based approaches in organizations. In 2010, a grant initiative, called the American Health Strategy Project (AHSP) was launched to support employers in better understanding the health of their company’s individual population. The grant initiative was delivered though the National Business Coalition on Health (NBCH) and solicited the involvement of five additional coalitions across the country as pilot locations. Each coalition self-identified their market projects. In Chicago, the MBGH project was titled the Midwest Health Strategy Project (MHSP).

This three-year collaborative supported participating employers in evaluating their company’s benefit design strategies and programs through a continuous improvement process approach that focused on improving the health of the company and better managing health benefit costs. Employers utilized, and encouraged to enhance, a set of tools that were initially developed during the Kansas City, KC2 project. The following are the project outcomes for the MBGH participating employers:


Developed internal, cross-functional health management teams to foster better engagement with senior leaders, enhanced overall work processes and provided a more effective way to accomplish mutual goals

Evaluation and streamlining of vendor partnerships in order to make more informed decisions about their health management approaches and communications

Implementation of various value-based benefit design strategies that aligned appropriate incentives with lifestyle behaviors therefore improving overall health and engagement Ability to better track improvement in population health risk status and clinical values

Improvement in employee engagement through health risk assessments, disease management programs, the development of targeted communication strategies and creative use of wellness champions

Business Case for Employers

  • In order to make effective decisions about the health of their covered population, employers need to have an overall picture of their company’s health)
  • Employers have access to a number of data sources, but many lack the time to be able to effectively coordinate these resources and have them provide the accurate picture they need
  • Employers who do have access to data many times find it nonactionable
  • It’s imperative for employers to understand population health through actionable data in an effort to unlock the full value of their company’s health benefits

Project Goals

  • To educate employers on the value of understanding their own data to make more informed decisions regarding effective interventions that target the health improvement of their covered populations
  • To evaluate internal business processes that support a company’s existing health management strategy and develop key enhancements that allow for a more effective approach
  • To support employers to align appropriate incentives for desired behaviors and remove barriers to health care for their employees

The Value of Participation