By helping participating clinicians and health systems proactively and collaboratively focus on clinical best practices, transitions of care and utilization of community resources, eBrightHealth ACO, an accountable care organization (ACO), has improved quality of care and achieved costs savings of nearly $2 million for 50,000 regional Medicare beneficiaries in its first two years of operation.
According to 2017 financial and quality performance results recently released by the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Shared Savings Program, eBrightHealth ACO reduced health care spending by $880,000 in 2017, building upon savings of $860,000 in the ACO’s first year. eBrightHealth ACO — which brings together more than 1,200 primary and specialty care clinicians from five regional health systems, including Atlantic General Hospital, Bayhealth, Beebe Healthcare, Christiana Care Health System and Nanticoke Health Services, as well as two federally qualified health centers and 15 private primary care practices — also earned the highest overall Quality Score in Delaware with high scores in all quality domains.
“The success is the result of diligent partnership by a dedicated group of clinicians and health system partners,” said Christine Donohue-Henry, M.D., MBA, president and chief executive officer of eBrightHealth ACO. “Together, these transformative caregivers are implementing and refining initiatives that promote improved health and quality of care for Medicare beneficiaries.”
eBrightHealth ACO helps clinicians address clinical, behavioral, social and other needs of Medicare beneficiaries to improve their access to primary care office visits, prevent unnecessary emergency department visits and decrease the amount of time they spend in hospitals. The result is improved quality of life for their patients and reduced health care spending.
This year and next, Dr. Donohue-Henry said an important focus for the ACO is to continue to help Medicare beneficiaries choose the appropriate level of care from both a quality and cost perspective by helping them understand when to see their primary care provider or to seek care from a medical aid unit or emergency department. The ACO is also encouraging beneficiaries to take advantage of the annual wellness visit, an important but less-familiar yearly Medicare benefit in which they meet with their primary care provider to create or update a personalized prevention plan.
eBrightHealth ACO serves approximately 50,000 Medicare beneficiaries from Delaware, Pennsylvania and Maryland. Care coordination is provided by Christiana Care Health System’s award-winning care coordination program, Carelink CareNow.
“eBrightHealth ACO is steadfastly committed to continuing to improve our performance in the coming years,” said Dr. Donohue-Henry. “We will continue to work together to transform the care we deliver and the proactive outreach to community members to improve the health of our Medicare beneficiaries and reduce health care costs.”