Tag Archives: affordability

Growth in Health Care Costs Continues to Slow for Some Patients

At Partners HealthCare, we believe that when it comes to health care, “high quality” and “affordablility” can go hand-in-hand. Last week, we saw that point proven through our participation in the U.S. government’s Pioneer Accountable Care Organizations (ACO) initiative.

For the second year in a row, Partners lowered health care cost growth for more than 60,000 Medicare patients. Through enhanced care coordination, the rate of cost growth fell by 0.46 percent, resulting in approximately $3.3 million in taxpayer savings, according to new federal data. Combined with our first year in the program, the total savings to date – shared between the federal government and Partners – tally $17.7 million.

More importantly, our Medicare patients are receiving better care. Partners ranked at or above the 90th percentile on 23 of 33 quality measures.

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Tags: affordability, uniform high quality

A Unique Partnership to Treat Domestic Violence Survivors

For survivors of domestic violence, recovering from abuse can involve both emotional and physical reconstruction. A unique partnership between Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary expands access to much-needed treatment by providing free or low-cost care to women, men, children and transgender patients who have suffered from domestic violence.

The program began at Mass. Eye and Ear, when Missy Allen, manager of the Facial Nerve Center and Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Center, approached her employer about financially supporting some of the domestic violence patients that the hospital was already treating, reported The Boston Globe. Allen now coordinates care for Mass. Eye and Ear’s domestic violence patients in the program.

MGH began working with Mass. Eye and Ear to treat these patients in 2009.

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Tags: affordability, community

Discussing Our Proposed Partnerships with WGBH’s Emily Rooney

Partners HealthCare president and CEO Dr. Gary Gottlieb appeared on WGBH’s “Greater Boston” last night to discuss our proposed partnerships with South Shore Hospital, Hallmark Health and Harbor Medical Associates.

“Our vision is really about our patients — getting them care where they live,” Dr. Gottlieb told host Emily Rooney.

As Rooney stated, Partners is known for our academic medical centers, Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, which serve an important role in providing the highest-quality care available to patients. However, Dr. Gottlieb noted there may not be a need to come to Boston; by partnering with hospitals in Melrose, Medford and Weymouth, we will better serve patients in those communities, closer to their homes, and help control health costs.

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Tags: affordability, coordinated care

Different Perspectives on Health Care

There has been a lot of conversation over the past few weeks about the agreement we reached with the Massachusetts Attorney General to acquire South Shore Hospital, Hallmark Health and Harbor Medical Associates. While a few of our competitors claim that these new affiliations would give Partners HealthCare too great a share in the marketplace, recent media articles have pointed out that the situation is much more nuanced.

A column in The Boston Globe cites analysts who say that in order to adapt to the Affordable Care Act and other health care regulations, hospitals’ “future largely depends on becoming larger.”

Big isn’t always bad – with greater scale comes greater efficiency.

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Tags: affordability, coordinated care

Why Our Partnerships Will Benefit Patients

Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley has filed an agreement in Suffolk Superior Court that would allow us to move forward on partnerships with South Shore Hospital, Hallmark Health and Harbor Medical Associates. Our vision offers substantive benefits for patients in these communities.

At Partners HealthCare, we want to expand access to affordable, coordinated health care, closer to the homes of our patients and their families. The agreement we’ve reached with the Attorney General helps us achieve this vision:

  • Coordinated: Creating strong clinical and financial ties between primary care physicians, community hospitals and our system is key to coordinating services across the continuum of care for our patients, which is why we’ve pursued these new affiliations.
  • Affordable: Caring for entire populations of patients further allows us to invest in the services they need to make the best decisions about their care. We’re doing this through population health management, a framework that helps us adhere to state and federal health care reforms.
  • Closer: We made a commitment to work with South Shore Hospital, Hallmark Health and Harbor Medical Associates to deliver the best possible care to patients and their families in their communities.

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Tags: affordability, coordinated care

Boston Globe Calls Partnership “Healthy for Massachusetts”

At Partners HealthCare, we’re working to bring high-quality, affordable health care closer to the communities we serve. A recent agreement in principle that we reached with the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office marked a significant step forward in achieving that goal. The agreement allows us to move forward with new partnerships with South Shore Hospital, Hallmark Health and Harbor Medical Associates, which will help expand access to affordable care into these hospital communities.

Local media—including the editorial pages of The Boston Herald, Boston Business Journal and The Patriot Ledger—support the decision. In an editorial earlier this week, The Boston Globe called the agreement “healthy for Massachusetts” and noted its potential to positively impact patients and the Commonwealth’s health care market.

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Tags: affordability, coordinated care

Boston Business Journal Endorses Our New Partnerships

After reaching an agreement in principle with the Massachusetts Attorney General earlier this week, multiple news organizations have expressed, in their editorials, support for the proposed new partnerships with South Shore Hospital, Hallmark Health and Harbor Medical Associates as they will allow us to bring high-quality care closer to patients and families on the North and South Shores, at affordable costs.

The BBJ notes, “Regulators did not play politics with Partners. Instead, they gave Partners the benefit of the doubt, which in the short term should translate into improved care options for South Shore residents.”

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Tags: affordability, coordinated care

Moving Forward with Our Partnerships

We’re pleased to announce that we have reached an agreement in principle with the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office that will allow Partners HealthCare to move ahead with partnerships with South Shore Hospital, Harbor Medical Associates and Hallmark Health System.

These affiliations support our mission to offer the highest-quality care to communities throughout Massachusetts, closer to the homes of our patients and their families and at a lower cost. As with all the communities we serve, we’ve made a commitment to bring the best possible care to the patients and families of Hallmark Health System, South Shore Hospital and Harbor Medical Associates.

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Tags: affordability, coordinated care

Dr. Timothy Ferris on the Success of Population Health Management for ACOs

Tim Ferris: Accountable Care Organisations in practice from Nuffield Trust on Vimeo.

Our population health management initiatives promote better coordinated, more accessible patient care while also helping to control costs over the long-term. Earlier this month, Partners Vice President of Population Health Management Dr. Timothy Ferris discussed our approach with Dr. Rebecca Rosen, senior fellow at Nuffield Trust in the UK, during the Trust’s annual Health Policy Summit.

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Tags: affordability, coordinated care

Boston Business Journal: Think About Health Care’s Future

At Partners HealthCare, we’re committed to expanding access to high-quality, affordable care for residents across Massachusetts, and we believe that our proposed partnership with South Shore Hospital will help bring that vision to residents south of Boston.

We project $27 million per year in patient savings through our partnership with South Shore Hospital, as well as better access to primary care and improved health information technology for those patients. On Friday, the Boston Business Journal argued that the key to success in reining in health care costs is to focus on the future needs of our patients, while allowing existing laws to work.

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Tags: affordability, community

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