FAIRFAX, Va. (July 23, 2014) – Health Connect IPA and UnitedHealthcare are collaborating to provide coordinated health care that improves quality and reduces costs for 17,000 Northern Virginia residents enrolled in UnitedHealthcare's employer-sponsored health plans.
This new accountable care organization (ACO) will help shift Northern Virginia's health care system from one based on volume of care to one that rewards quality and value. Health Connect IPA and its affiliated physicians will manage all aspects of patients' care, providing the right care in the right place at the right time.
The ACO will help Health Connect IPA's primary care physicians improve transitions of care for patients and facilitate improved communication with all who are involved in a patient's treatment. Primary care physicians in the ACO will receive regular patient updates, enabling them to monitor all of the care each patient is receiving, and maintain all clinical information about each patient in a secure patient registry.
UnitedHealthcare employer-sponsored plan participants who are currently served by the participating care providers will not have to do anything differently to receive the benefits of this new ACO, which include enhanced care coordination and follow-up, beginning Aug. 1.
Health Connect IPA is an association of five independent primary care practices with 150 physicians across 23 locations in Northern Virginia dedicated to providing clinically integrated medical and health care services that are quality-based, value-driven and patient-centered.
"We are excited to offer UnitedHealthcare customers Health Connect IPA's comprehensive clinical care management and coordination, and enhance our ability to serve Northern Virginia's unique health care needs through this partnership," said Lauri Rustand, executive director of HealthConnect IPA and CEO of Fairfax Family Practice Centers.
UnitedHealthcare and Health Connect IPA coordinate evidence-based care, ensuring that the primary care physicians, specialists and facilities are aligned with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement's (IHI's) "Triple Aim" objective: increase patient satisfaction, improve the health of the population and reduce the cost of health care.
"UnitedHealthcare continues to work with care providers statewide to help enhance health services and improve coordination of care for patients," said Christopher Mullins, executive director, UnitedHealthcare of the Mid-Atlantic. "We believe our collaboration with Health Connect IPA will deliver enhanced quality, better outcomes and greater efficiency for our health plan customers in Northern Virginia."
This is UnitedHealthcare's first ACO in Virginia. UnitedHealthcare serves 700,000 people in Virginia with a care provider network of 102 hospitals and more than 16,000 physicians statewide.
Nationwide, more than $30 billion of UnitedHealthcare's annual physician and hospital reimbursements are tied to accountable care programs, centers of excellence and performance-based programs. The company projects this will reach $65 billion by 2018.
Health Connect IPA is dedicated to providing the Northern Virginia community with medical and health care services that are quality based, value driven and patient centered, and a competitive, clinically integrated, independent and highly engaged physician network that is committed to team work and accountability. HealthConnect IPA's founding members include five independent primary care practices in Northern Virginia: Fairfax Family Practice Centers, General Internal Medicine Group, Mount Vernon Internal Medicine, Fairfax Pediatric Associates and Virginia Pediatric Group.
UnitedHealthcare is dedicated to helping people nationwide live healthier lives by simplifying the health care experience, meeting consumer health and wellness needs, and sustaining trusted relationships with care providers. The company offers the full spectrum of health benefit programs for individuals, employers and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and contracts directly with more than 800,000 physicians and care professionals, and 6,000 hospitals and other care facilities nationwide. Globally, UnitedHealthcare serves more than 45 million people in health benefits and is one of the businesses of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH), a diversified Fortune 50 health and well-being company.