Mayo Clinic and the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative Award

In 2015, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation awarded Mayo Clinic nearly $10 million to participate in the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative. The funding accelerates practice transformation work taking place at Mayo Clinic's campuses in Arizona, Minnesota and Florida and throughout Mayo Clinic Health System.

Funds from the initiative are being used to provide clinicians with the tools, information and technology needed to continuously improve quality of care and patient experience, increase patients' access to their medical information, and decrease health care costs. The award supports efforts to transition volume-driven systems to value-based, patient-centered health care services.

Improving the value of community care

Through the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative, Mayo Clinic is working to improve the value of community care in the following ways:

  • Implementing a team-based model of care that involves physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurses and other allied health staff, which may include pharmacists, social workers and behavioral health specialists
  • Continuously improving the quality of care delivery for chronic diseases and prevention
  • Building technology and data infrastructure to measure and track patient outcomes, utilization of services and tools, and costs across community practices
  • Improving access so that patients receive the right level of care from the right providers at the right time and in the most convenient way
  • Decreasing unnecessary hospitalizations and emergency department visits
  • Seeking greater patient and family engagement, including the use of Patient Online Services, patient and family advisory councils, and shared decision-making initiatives to assist patients in staying healthy or proactively managing chronic illnesses
  • Incorporating behavioral health screenings into routine primary care visits to enhance management of key risk factors for depression

Decreasing health care costs

As part of the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative, Mayo Clinic seeks to decrease health care costs and increase efficiency and effectiveness in delivered health care services through the following approaches:

  • Reducing unnecessary services, including hospital readmissions, nonemergency visits to the emergency department, extraneous or repetitive testing and imaging, and nonevidence-based services such as annual exams or physicals
  • Initiating a team-based model of care in which team members collaborate with each other and patients
  • Decreasing or eliminating return visits when not needed, such as to discuss lab results
  • Offering convenience care options, such as a nurse triage line, Express Care clinic locations, Express Care Online, and Patient Online Services that allow patients to access medical records, tests or lab results, and communicate with care team members
  • Decreasing hospital-acquired infections
  • Decreasing the length of hospital stays
  • Coordinating care to provide individualized services to patients with multiple chronic or serious health conditions
  • Managing depression, which has been shown to improve outcomes of managing other chronic diseases while lowering costs
  • Providing health care delivery and diagnosis based on Mayo Clinic's evidence-based, expert medical knowledge
  • Utilizing prevention opportunities by proactively using testing or imaging, which is less expensive than treating more-advanced diseases or conditions that could have been addressed early or prevented

These practice changes add value not only for Mayo Clinic's patients. As sustainable best practices are identified and shared, the nation's health care system and patients everywhere benefit.

The Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative Award is managed collaboratively by the Mayo Clinic Population Health Committee and the Mayo Clinic Robert D. and Patricia E. Kern Center for the Science of Health Care Delivery.

It is led by Kari S. Bunkers, M.D., a family medicine physician and medical director of the Mayo Clinic Population Health Committee.


Read peer-reviewed articles on PubMed from the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative Award and Mayo Clinic:


The projects described are supported by Funding Opportunity Number 1L1CMS331449-01 from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The contents provided are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of HHS or any of its agencies.


Kari S. Bunkers, M.D.

Diane K. Olson, M.A.