For the past several months, dozens of physicians from across the area have been working with representatives from Martin Health System to develop the Treasure Coast Integrated Healthcare network, an accountable care organization (ACO). TCIH is the newly formed clinically integrated network that will transform healthcare in our communities by collaborating with premier healthcare providers and engaging patients in their health choices to provide value-based healthcare.
TCIH is a group of hospitals and providers who collaborate and contract together to improve quality and control costs, i.e., achieve value. The legal definition of acceptable clinical integration provided by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and U.S. Department of Justice, 1996, states: “Clinical integration is an active and ongoing program to evaluate and modify practice patterns by the network’s physician participants and create a high degree of interdependence and cooperation among the physicians to control costs and ensure quality.”
TCIH was created to engage physicians to lead our transformation to deliver higher quality and more cost effective care. TCIH will lead the development of a health system organized for population health to accomplish the transformation from volume-based reimbursement to value-based. This transformation in care delivery and financing will require significant physician engagement and leadership to assure patient-centered care with the goals of three objectives: improve the patient care experience, improve population health and reduce the per capita cost of care.
As an ACO, TCIH will transform healthcare by collaborating with premier healthcare providers and engaging patients in their health choices. This includes:
- Improving the patient care experience.
- Improving the health of the communities we serve.
- Efficiently providing the highest quality, evidence-based care.
- Demonstrating commitment to innovation, value-based care, and ongoing performance improvement.
- Becoming the preferred partner for physicians in our communities through a culture of collaboration, innovation, transparency and trust.
Besides addressing some of the requirements of health care reform, TCIH will address the need of payers and employers to stabilize premiums and decrease costs. In a collaborative and transparent effort between hospitals, physicians, payers (insurers/employers/government) and patients, TCIH seeks to accomplish, at a minimum, the following:
- Improve quality of care and patient outcomes.
- Maintain or improve the overall health of defined populations.
- Establish major diagnosis/disease state evidence-based clinical guidelines that are cost effective and yield more reliable quality and results.
- Develop a TCIH network-wide system to communicate and evaluate performance within clinical guidelines.
- Develop a comprehensive patient wellness program for preventative care.
- Develop a communication system that allows for transparent communication between all network providers regarding coordination and management of the individual patient’s overall health.
- Explore alternative payment models that are more based in outcomes than only fee-for-service practice.
- Maintain or reduce healthcare costs.
- Develop mutually acceptable shared financial goals and risk/incentive systems to incentivize great outcomes.
TCIH Network Leadership
The TCIH Board of Directors are:
Tiffany Weakley, MD
Jean Vickers, MD
Dan Edelman, DO
Chief Medical Officer
Paul Swanson, MD
TCIH Network Physician Directory
TCIH Network Physician Directory
The TCIH impact
Physicians and hospitals will work together in a collaborative fashion to improve the health of the population as payment for care changes from volume-based to value-based incentives. Shared savings and other current or future alternative payment models are only sustainable when all components of the care delivery system work in a coordinated way. TCIH promotes physician participation in that transformation to improve the quality and the coordination of care that will increase efficiency and cost effectiveness. Through participation in the TCIH network you have the opportunity to influence collaboratively the selection of the quality initiatives and the measures by which success will be determined.
For general questions or additional information about Accountable Care Organizations, please visit www.medicare.gov/acos.html or call 1-800 MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048.