Jury draw begins in OneCare Vermont whistleblower case

Published: Nov. 15, 2023 at 6:21 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 15, 2023 at 6:28 PM EST
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MONTPELIER, Vt. (WCAX) - Jury draw began Wednesday in a wrongful termination lawsuit against the organization at the heart of the state’s health care reform efforts, OneCare Vermont.

It all stems from a former employee, Robert Hoffman, who, back in 2018, raised concerns about the legitimacy of the organization’s data.

OneCare Vermont is a collection of hospitals, doctors and providers banded together, and is a nonprofit.

Vermont has invested more than $200 million since the all-payer model’s launch in 2018. The idea is to reform how health care is paid for, and to incentivize primary and preventive care, and, ultimately, bring down the cost of care.

At the heart of this case is the former employee’s concern about the accuracy of OneCare’s data, which is at the center of measuring how effective the all-payer model is.

Hoffman worked as a data analytics manager for several months until he was fired from OneCare in 2018. He says it was for raising concerns about the reliability of OneCare’s data, and he went on to file a federal whistleblower complaint.

OneCare could not comment on Wednesday’s hearing, but they’ve previously told us Hoffman’s claims are baseless.

One of OneCare’s biggest roles is tracking data to see if Vermonters are actually getting healthier and whether the all-payer model is actually saving money. A previous independent report has shown that all-payer is saving money and fewer people are going to the hospital, but this lawsuit could raise questions about the information it’s based on.

The trial is slated to begin early next year.

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