PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 17, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- In a shared commitment to improve the quality and affordability of health care in southeastern Pennsylvania, Independence Blue Cross (IBC) and Jefferson Health System (JHS) announced today that they have reached agreement on new two-year contracts that demonstrate a strong collaboration between the region's leading health insurer and largest health care system.
"Our agreement with Jefferson Health System responds to the critical need for more collaboration in health care among physicians, hospitals, and health plans to help transform the delivery of health care," said Independence Blue Cross President and CEO Daniel J. Hilferty. "We believe that working together Independence Blue Cross and Jefferson Health System can offer innovative solutions that raise the quality of care and lower health care costs for consumers in our region."
IBC and JHS have a longstanding relationship that spans 18 years. In 2011, JHS was among the first health systems to implement IBC's newly enhanced incentive plan designed to reward hospitals and physicians that provide better coordinated, higher quality, and more cost-effective care. The new plan, IBC's Integrated Provider Performance Incentive Plan (IPPIP), is an accountable care payment model that has now been adopted by more than 85 percent of the hospital and health systems in IBC's network as part of their agreements with IBC.
Hilferty adds, "Through our accountable care payment model, we have created one of the largest concentrations of ACO-like collaborations between a health plan and hospital systems in a major metropolitan market. We are proud to have the newly expanded participation of Jefferson Health System and its affiliated accountable care organization, 'ACO-PA', in this innovative model of care."
IBC's accountable care payment model gives significant financial incentives to hospitals and health systems organized in an accountable care model for delivering better health outcomes and lowering medical costs. This includes hospitals and physicians improving performance related to hospital acquired infections and avoidable readmissions, and for following evidence based guidelines for surgical care and for the treatment of heart attacks, heart failure, and pneumonia. It also includes hospitals and physicians managing medical costs through greater collaboration and coordination of inpatient, outpatient, ancillary care, home health, prescriptions, and other health services.
"Our new contract with Independence Blue Cross is based upon a shared commitment to improving the quality of care and delivering value to our patients and IBC's members," said Jefferson Health System Executive Vice President and ACO-PA President, David F. Simon. "We are excited about the future of health care and look forward to collaborating with IBC in an evolving health care environment."
The new agreement, which went into effect on June 1, 2013, offers IBC members access to covered services at the following Jefferson Health System acute-care hospitals: the Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals, including its Jefferson Hospital for Neuroscience and Methodist Hospital divisions, and the Main Line Health hospitals (Bryn Mawr, Lankenau, Paoli, and Riddle). In addition, the agreements cover Magee Rehabilitation Hospital, Bryn Mawr Rehabilitation Hospital, and other ancillary providers, including Jefferson's home health care and ambulance companies, as well as the physicians of Main Line Health Care, Methodist Associates in Healthcare, and the Magee Physician Group.
About Independence Blue Cross
Proudly celebrating its 75th anniversary in 2013, Independence Blue Cross is the leading health insurer in southeastern Pennsylvania. With our affiliates, we serve more than 7 million people nationwide, including 2.2 million in the region. We are enhancing the health and wellness of the people and communities we serve by delivering innovative and competitively priced health care products and services; pioneering new ways to reward doctors, hospitals, and other health care professionals for coordinated, quality care; and supporting programs and events that promote wellness. To learn more about how we're changing the game, visit www.ibx.com. Connect with us on Facebook at ibx.com/facebook and on Twitter at @ibx. Independence Blue Cross is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
About Jefferson Health System
Headquartered in Radnor, Pennsylvania, Jefferson Health System members have more than 14,800 full-time employees, 2,435 beds and 3,400 medical staff members. Jefferson Health System includes Magee Rehabilitation Hospital; Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals, which includes the Jefferson Hospital for Neuroscience and Methodist Hospital; and Main Line Health, which includes Bryn Mawr Hospital, Paoli Hospital, Riddle Hospital, Lankenau Medical Center and Bryn Mawr Rehabilitation Hospital. In 2012, the Jefferson Health System was ranked as one of the Top 15 Health Systems in the nation by Thomson Reuters and Thomas Jefferson University Hospital was recently named to U.S. News & World Report's 2013-2014 Honor Roll of Best Hospitals.
About Jefferson Health System ACO●PA
JHS formed the Accountable Care Organizaton of Pennsylvania (ACO●PA) in 2011. ACO●PA's objective is to align quality goals and payment models to incent the ACO●PA network of hospitals and physicians to deliver quality, value-driven care, with a high level of patient and provider satisfaction.
Source:Independence Blue Cross