Geisinger lands 2011 AMGA Acclaim Award

By Bernie Monegain
08:57 AM

Geisinger Health System in Danville, Pa., took the American Medical Group Association’s 2011 Acclaim Award. The health system, known for its pioneering use of healthcare information technology, was recognized for its Transforming Care Delivery: Patient-centric, Value-driven Innovation initiative.

The Geisinger program is a patient-centered system redesign focusing on quality and safety, cost, innovative care delivery and interdisciplinary care coordination across the organization.
The award, granted through AMGA’s philanthropic arm, the American Medical Group Foundation (AMGF), was presented on Monday at AMGA’s Institute for Quality Leadership Annual Conference in Las Vegas.  The trade association represents medical groups across the country, including some of the nation’s largest medical practices, independent practice associations and integrated healthcare delivery systems.

AMGA officials issued this statement about Geisinger:

“Through the award-winning initiative, Geisinger Health System has been designing and implementing innovative value-driven approaches to improving healthcare. With strong commitment from leadership, which invested in superior infrastructure, Geisinger has focused on patient-centered primary care and redesign of inpatient and specialty care. In their move away from traditional fee-for-service, Geisinger’s engaged physicians and stakeholders collected and assessed data to define quality and performance drivers that would result in a redesigned care delivery model. The new model integrates technology into clinical care, involves the patient and family, insures total accountability through aligned incentives, and reduces variability through care redesign and performance feedback to improve patient outcomes, thereby decreasing costs.”

Besides Geisinger, AMGA named three other groups Acclaim Award Honorees:

  • Carolinas Physicians Network, through its “Operational Innovation Drives Clinical Integration” initiative, successfully designed and executed a clinical integration strategy between the physician network and the larger health system, rooted in physician and administrative co-leadership and patient-centered care. With a focus on meeting the Institute of Medicine (IOM) Aims for the 21st Century by incorporating the six attributes of an ideal healthcare delivery system, the organization aligned all tactics through its established strategic priorities: EMR, single unified tnterprise, quality, patient relationship management, efficiency and productivity and physician partnership. This resulted in the development and implementation of innovative, high-value tactics that measurably improved patient satisfaction, quality, system integration and physician engagement, all while simultaneously expanding the size of the network through a disciplined and systematic, organic growth strategy. Carolinas Physicians Network is a division of Carolinas HealthCare System.
  • Gould Medical Group, through its “Rediscovering Greatness: Using Our Founding Values to Guide Our Future” initiative, addressed serious competitive challenges by looking to their past and re-instilling their founders’ values to achieve significant improvements in patient satisfaction and clinical quality in just three years. Through committed leadership, Gould developed a group compact and performance-bonus system based on their eight key values. The resulting cultural change improved leadership, emphasized quality and patient satisfaction, and engendered enthusiasm through team projects. Their experience demonstrates the power of clearly articulating and communicating the group’s vision and values while aligning the organizational structure, leadership team and bonus incentives.
  • HealthTexas Provider Network’s, “Transforming Healthcare Delivery Through Patient-centered Care” initiative centers on their strategy of clinical transformation: a commitment to continually improve the quality of patient care through the redesign of key clinical processes. This strategy centered on reducing unintended variation, cost, waste and error has enabled HealthTexas Provider Network to make remarkable progress in developing and implementing quality improvement initiatives. Through dedicated leadership and the development of an infrastructure committed to preventive health, disease management and patient-centered medical home sustainability, HealthTexas Provider Network continues to improve outcomes, access, satisfaction, value and coordinated care across the continuum. Patients and their communities drive HealthTexas Provider Network’s dedication and commitment to quality. The implementation of initiatives that are safe, timely, efficient, effective, equitable and patient-centered has produced significant improvements to the care HealthTexas Provider Network delivers to patients, giving them the means to better manage their overall health and quality of life.

“These organizations demonstrated a monumental leap forward in providing patients the healthcare they need, want and deserve,” said Donald W. Fisher, AMGA’s president and CEO and AMGF secretary/treasurer. “We salute the dedication of the organizations’ leadership and healthcare providers in improving patient outcomes, efficiency, coordination, and organizational and clinical integration. Their ongoing efforts will ensure that their patients will receive quality, value-based care throughout their lives.”

AMGA’s Acclaim Award honors organizations that embrace the Institute of Medicine’s aims by incorporating the six attributes of an ideal healthcare delivery system as identified by the Commonwealth Fund Commission on a High Performance Health System.

These organizations demonstrated that:

  • Clinically relevant patient information can be available to all providers at the point of care and to patients, preferably through electronic health record systems.
  • Patient care is coordinated among multiple providers, and transitions across care settings are actively managed.
  • All members of the care team both within and across settings have accountability to each other, review each other’s work, and collaborate to reliably deliver high-quality, high-value care.
  • Patients have easy access to appropriate care, including after hours; there are multiple points of ntry to the system; and providers are culturally competent and responsive to patients’ needs.
  • There is clear accountability for the total care of patients.
  • The system is continuously innovating and learning.