Rhode Island Primary Care and UnitedHealthcare Collaborate to Improve Patient Care in Rhode Island

December 18, 2014
  • More than 15,000 UnitedHealthcare employer-sponsored health plan participants in Rhode Island have access to improved care coordination and enhanced health services

Rhode Island Primary Care Physicians Corporation (RIPCPC) and UnitedHealthcare have launched an accountable care organization (ACO) to improve the care coordination and provide enhanced health services for more than 15,000 Rhode Island residents enrolled in UnitedHealthcare’s employer-sponsored health plans.

RIPCPC has been dedicated to improving patient outcomes since 1994. The state’s largest independent practice association has a track record of developing innovative approaches to health care delivery that foster improved quality, enhanced patient satisfaction and reduced cost.

This new ACO will help continue shifting Rhode Island’s health care system to one that rewards quality and value rather than the volume of procedures performed. The practice’s 130 primary care physicians will manage all aspects of patients’ care, providing the right care in the right place at the right time. Physicians in the ACO will receive regular patient updates, enabling the care providers to monitor the care patients are receiving, and enhancing RIPCPC’s patient-management capabilities.

RIPCPC’s care providers will be eligible to receive payment incentives based on evidence-based measures such as hospital readmission rates, disease management and prevention, patient safety and care delivery, as well as total cost savings and patient satisfaction.

“We have long partnered with UnitedHealthcare to apply our expertise in health care innovation and patient-centered programs to improve the health of its plan participants and the broader Rhode Island community,” said Al Puerini, M.D., president and CEO, RIPCPC. “Together, we can continue to increase patient engagement to achieve better health outcomes and improve patient satisfaction, while reducing the overall cost of care.”

UnitedHealthcare employer-sponsored plan participants who currently receive care from RIPCPC-affiliated care providers will not have to do anything differently to receive the benefits of this new ACO that include enhanced care coordination and follow-up care.

“Our collaborative relationship with RIPCPC has helped improve the quality of care for our plan participants for many years while reducing health care costs,” said Stephen Farrell, CEO, UnitedHealthcare of New England. “We have piloted programs to help people better manage chronic illness and enhanced the effectiveness of personal health tracking devices to improve their health. We look forward to expanding ways we can help our plan participants live healthier lives.”

Care providers nationwide are showing strong interest in a shift to value-based care. UnitedHealthcare’s physician and hospital reimbursements that are tied to accountable care programs, centers of excellence and performance-based arrangements have nearly tripled in the last three years to $36 billion. The company projects this reimbursement will reach $65 billion by 2018. For more information about UnitedHealthcare’s accountable care organization initiatives, visit www.AccountableCareAnswers.com.

UnitedHealthcare serves more than 280,000 people in Rhode Island with a care provider network of 13 hospitals and more than 3,500 physicians statewide.

About Rhode Island Primary Care Physicians Corporation (RIPCPC)
Rhode Island Primary Care, Rhode Island's largest IPA, was formed in 1994 to provide a venue for the smaller and independent practices to work together with the ultimate goal of improving quality of care for their patients. Its 130 primary care physicians act as primary care providers for more than 200,000 patients throughout the state of Rhode Island and also have an affiliation with more than 200 specialty-care member physicians. RIPCPC has transformed more than 50 practices into Patient-Centered Medical Homes, meeting the National Committee for Quality Assurance’s rigorous criteria. There are now more than 20 nurse care managers working in their member practices, following their most complex patients, promoting wellness and working with the RIPCPC champion physicians to focus on quality improvement.

About UnitedHealthcare
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, military service members, retirees and their families,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 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. For more information, visit UnitedHealthcare at www.uhc.com or follow @myUHC on Twitter.

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