Memorial Hermann and UnitedHealthcare have launched an accountable care program to improve people’s health and their satisfaction with their health care experience.
The joint effort will focus largely on dedicating more resources to care coordination, making it easier to share important health information so that every doctor and team member involved in a patient’s care is supporting the same treatment plan.
UnitedHealthcare and Memorial Hermann’s accountable care program changes the incentives for how medical care is paid for in southeast Texas, moving away from a system that reimburses for quantity of services provided to one that rewards the quality of patients’ health outcomes and has the potential to reduce overall costs.
All Houston-area residents enrolled in UnitedHealthcare’s employer-sponsored health plans are eligible to benefit from the collaboration. More than 120,000 UnitedHealthcare employer-sponsored plan participants access Memorial Hermann’s services each year.
“UnitedHealthcare and Memorial Hermann are working together to help people receive more personalized and better connected care, which will significantly enhance people’s ability to live healthier lives,” said Dave Milich, CEO, UnitedHealthcare of South Texas.
“We are delighted to expand this relationship with UnitedHealthcare as it supports our mission to provide access to affordable, high-quality and safe health care to families in the Texas Gulf Coast region,” said Dr. Benjamin K. Chu, president and CEO of the Memorial Hermann Health System. “This collaboration will benefit UnitedHealthcare plan participants with better care and lower medical costs, and reward care providers for the quality rather than the volume of their care.”
Memorial Hermann, an integrated health system known for its world-class clinical expertise, patient-centered care, innovation and a focus on quality and patient safety, is the largest not-for-profit health system in southeast Texas.
Memorial Hermann has a track record of successful ACO programs. It was recognized as the No. 1 Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) in the country for the last two years, saving nearly $53 million in 2014.
Many people who have gone to the doctor or hospital – particularly those with complex or chronic illnesses – have found they often have to connect information from each of their doctor visits themselves, and have sometimes received duplicative tests or care that isn’t coordinated.
Through this collaboration, UnitedHealthcare and Memorial Hermann will work together to better coordinate patients’ care, using shared technology, timely data and information about emergency room visits and hospital admissions.
This partnership will also provide services to help patients manage their chronic health conditions by enhancing relationships with their personal physicians and encouraging healthy lifestyles.
UnitedHealthcare will supplement Memorial Hermann’s own data to help support overall population health, giving the entire care team clear, actionable data about individual patients’ health needs, potential gaps in care and proactive identification of high-risk patients.
Patient navigators may also be used to support community-based care coordination, such as helping with planning after a patient is discharged from the hospital and scheduling follow-up appointments.
UnitedHealthcare serves more than 4.4 million Texans with a network of 514 hospitals and more than 68,500 physicians and other care providers statewide.
More than 14 million people enrolled in UnitedHealthcare plans across the country have access to accountable care programs, delivered in part through more than 750 accountable care arrangements nationwide as the organization engages in deeper, more collaborative relationships with physicians and hospitals.
Care providers nationwide are showing strong interest in a shift to value-based care. UnitedHealthcare’s total payments to physicians and hospitals that are tied to value-based arrangements have tripled in the last three years to nearly $47 billion. By the end of 2018, UnitedHealthcare expects that figure to reach $65 billion.
For more information about UnitedHealthcare’s full spectrum of value-based initiatives, visit www.UHC.com/valuebasedcare.