Colleagues—By now I’m sure you’ve heard our news announcing the joint venture between UCHealth and Intermountain Health, creating a statewide, clinically integrated network. The C3 team is eager to share our excitement about all the possibilities this will bring to your practices and patients.
I wanted to start off by revisiting the importance of clinically integrated networks (CINs) in changing how we deliver health care. We all are well aware that health care, as it exists today, is not achieving the results we aspire to reach. In fact, we spend more money for lower-quality care than any other developed country. In the U.S., health care is fragmented and inequitable. Clinicians operate in silos, and important social, behavioral and economic drivers are often not factored into a patient’s care.
Simply put, a clinically integrated network (CIN) is a partnership of clinicians and administrators across the care continuum working to deliver high-quality, evidence-based, patient-centered care that is both cost-effective and equitable. A high-functioning CIN embodies a new business model of health care that supports the quadruple aim. A CIN is an attempt to transform health care delivery from a reactive, to a proactive, process. In its most advanced form, under a capitated payment model, it can enable clinicians to take ownership of our role in keeping patients healthy, make care more affordable, and ultimately keep us connected to the reasons we entered the healing profession in the first place.
So, what does this mean for you, and your practice, as members of this new network? In other words, what can you expect from the network, and what does the network expect of you?
Network practices can expect help with the following:
- Contracts that support the transformed practice model and reward clinicians for healthier patients and lower costs of care.
- Help focusing your efforts on the most impactful measures using a single scorecard driven by data and analytics.
- An expanded care team to help you care for your patients in the “in-between” spaces.
- Collaborative relationships with specialists and community organizations to support your patients’ care across the continuum.
- Streamlined data sharing between organizations to ensure that clinicians have a full picture of their patients’ health journey and their needs along the way.
And, as partners, here is what we need from you:
- A commitment to providing the highest-quality, evidence-based care.
- A focus on keeping patients at the center of your practice operations.
- Engagement in learning how to be a clinician in a transformed health care delivery model. This will mean holding ourselves accountable for the health outcomes we deliver, taking more ownership for making the care we offer more affordable, and leading the teams of caregivers working with us.
Ultimately, we all went into health care to provide patients with the means to live their healthiest life. A clinically integrated network, the payment models that support it, and the tools and teams for collaboration it can provide, offer us a way to do just that.
Amy Scanlan, MD