Catholic Medical Partners, whose membership includes Catholic Health, Mount St. Mary’s Hospital and more than 900 area physicians, was one of 27 organizations nationwide selected to participate in a national program aimed at improving quality and realizing cost savings in providing healthcare for Medicare patients.
In an announcement from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in Washington, D.C., Catholic Medical Partners was named the only shared savings Accountable Care Organization (ACO) in Western New York.
Catholic Medical Partners was selected based on rigorous eligibility criteria and program requirements.
The Shared Savings Program rewards ACOs that lower the rate of growth in healthcare costs for Medicare beneficiaries while meeting performance standards on quality of care and putting patients first. ACOs are groups of doctors and other healthcare providers working together to provide high quality service and care for their patients.
Provider participation in an ACO is purely voluntary and Medicare beneficiaries retain their current ability to seek treatment from any provider they wish.
“This is a milestone moment in the effort to reform and improve healthcare in Western New York,” said Dennis R. Horrigan, president and CEO, Catholic Medical Partners.
“The commitment of our physician partners and our strategic relationship with Catholic Health is enabling this transformation. We are excited to serve area Medicare patients as an Accountable Care Organization and to move our community closer to realizing the goals of true health reform – improved quality, improved patient experience and lower cost.”
CMS will use robust quality measures to reward ACOs, including Catholic Medical Partners, for providing Medicare beneficiaries with a positive patient experience and better health outcomes, while also reducing growth in the cost of care for the same patient population.
The efforts toward, and the success of many patient-centered initiatives at both Catholic Medical Partners and Catholic Health were key in CMS’s decision to select our ministries to participate in the shared savings ACO program. These initiatives include clinical integration, leveraging health information technology, and disease management programs among others.
“The goals of the Accountable Care Organization are aligned with Catholic Health’s work as a High Performing Health System and with our mission of transforming the delivery of healthcare in Western New York,” added Joe McDonald, president and CEO, Catholic Health.
This article is appeared in the May 2012 edition of Physician Resource, a quarterly publication for Catholic Health physicians that delivers information about the practice of medicine at Catholic Health and the resources, initiatives and programs available to physicians.