What They’re Watching: Ken Meyer, Beacon Health Options

Ken Meyer is the SVP, CFO, West Region at Beacon Health Options. He joins us in this edition of “What They’re Watching” to discuss Beacon’s work in addressing the opioid crisis. Meyer says the behavioral health services company is focused on shifting away from some of the historical trends of care for opioid and substance use disorders.


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“Really, what we’re focusing on is there’s a lot with the opioid crisis right now – it’s the really big issue that’s going on nationally. So, we do have a lot of focus with trying to build out a provider network that really is an end-to-end treatment network. So, our network capabilities really has kind of been our key focus to try to make sure we can handle all levels of treatment, all levels of issues, handle majority of members, and try to catch members before they actually hit crisis to de-escalate issues. So, building a really robust provider network, and creating value-based payment type arrangements with providers to really drive down health care costs. And really to get away from a focus on the historical trend of higher levels of care, more volume-based types of treatment, into looking at more outcomes-based type solutions to the treatment plans to really get providers focusing on what really is helping members live and sustain lives on their own without having to require treatment.

There is a big stigmatism with just seeking treatment for opioid use disorder or just a substance use disorder in addition to you know normal behavioral health issues. So, really trying to focus on eliminating that stigmatism is probably a key focal point that we want people to be able to feel like they can have a safe and comfortable place to go and seek treatment and not be ostracized for having a disease.”