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Health care consortium aims to cut costs

Rochester Business Journal
July 7, 2014

A new consortium led by the University of Rochester Medical Center and the newly merged, but still unnamed, Rochester General/Unity Health System plans to redesign the way area health care organizations deliver care to the region’s 320,000 Medicaid patients.

With a goal of cutting area health care costs through a 25 percent reduction in local hospital admissions, URMC and the RGHS/Unity system have convened a 200-organization consortium.

Members include physicians, health planning organizations, nursing homes, behavioral health and substance abuse programs, social service agencies, and other programs that provide services to low-income residents. Organizations in the group span 14 counties.

Called the Finger Lakes Performing Provider System, the consortium hopes to win funding from the state’s Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment program, officials said Monday

The state is parceling out funds from an $8 billion Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services waiver. The waiver is supposed to go toward improving quality and driving down costs.  

The consortium is considering several initiatives. Generally aimed at connecting Medicaid patients to stable primary care, efforts the consortium is weighing include:

•    Adding new primary care services and establishing medical homes for Medicaid patients;
•    Putting behavioral health and primary care services in the same locations;
•    Expanding transportation options for Medicaid patients; and
•    Expanding transitional housing and care options, so patients discharged from a hospital can receive proper care and avoid readmission.

“With the collaboration of literally hundreds of health care providers,” said RGHS/Unity co-CEO Mark Clement, “we expect to refine delivery systems that not only continue to control cost, but more importantly improve quality and access for patients.”  
     
(c) 2014 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or e-mail service@rbj.net.
 
 


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