Caravan Health today announced the addition of 103 new health systems and 15 new accountable care organizations (ACO) to its growing group of partners, which now totals more than 250 hospitals in the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) serving more than 460,000 attributed beneficiaries. The news, which follows the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) announcement earlier this week detailing a total of 124 new ’18 ACOs, demonstrates strong interest in population health among community hospitals.
ACOs have proven to be an effective strategy for provider organizations and independent clinicians to achieve quality improvements and cost savings to meet value-based care requirements. The number of U.S. ACOs has grown every year since the program began in 2012, signifying healthcare providers’ desire to share responsibility for patient populations by aligning incentives and resources to work toward common goals with partners. As of January, per the CMS’ release, 561 ACOs in the MSSP are serving more than 10.5 million seniors and people with disabilities.

“As pressures tying performance to payment have escalated over the past several years, we’ve worked with an increasing number of hospitals and health systems leading their regions in this unchartered territory,” said Lynn Barr, Caravan Health’s chief executive officer. “From addressing challenges unique to their patient populations, to ensuring the organization is equipped to adapt to policy changes, align its physicians and capitalize on new revenue streams, we have an impressive track record helping clients succeed in value-based care.
We are particularly grateful for the assistance of CPSI for many small and rural hospitals that would not be able to participate in this important program without their support. Caravan Health programs have historically improved care and lowered costs in the most difficult, rural settings, and today more than 70 percent of new beneficiaries in Caravan Health ACOs come from urban and suburban areas. Rural providers have blazed the trail for better care and lower costs, united by a passion to care for their community. Urban areas are now following the same successful playbook that has consistently produced the best patient care, avoiding unnecessary hospitalizations and post-acute care.”

Supported by its resources and expertise building ACOs that jumpstart population health programs and produce immediate quality and financial wins, the company’s clients have achieved remarkable results, capturing quality scores and savings significantly above average. Its newest partnerships with Avera McKennen Hospital & University Health CenterHuntsville Hospital and others, bringing Caravan Health’s total number of partner ACOs to 38, serving more than 1 million patients in nearly every state.

Located in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Avera McKennen Hospital & University Health Center is the flagship facility of Avera Health System, which serves patients across the Upper Midwest through more than 300 sites of care.

“Our system has worked with Caravan Health for several years with our rural hospitals and we’ve been incredibly pleased with the level of service received, and more importantly, system-wide improvements that have been made as a direct result of their guidance and technical expertise,” said Avera McKennen Hospital & University Health Center President and CEO David Flicek. “Given Avera’s and Caravan’s strong results, it was a natural next step to involve our cornerstone facility given Caravan Health’s history of producing strong results within our desired time frame.”

The engagement with Huntsville Hospital is one of Caravan Health’s most extensive. The facility is the second largest hospital in Alabama, and is part of Huntsville Hospital System, one of the largest publicly-owned systems in the U.S. Caravan Health is working with the hospital to create efficiencies in its population health efforts across a number of areas. Under the agreement, Caravan Health will work with the hospital’s senior leadership in departments spanning IT, nursing, finance and administration.

“Our partnership with Caravan Health is a testament to our health system’s commitment to quality care and continuous pursuit of clinical excellence,” said Jeff Samz, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Huntsville Hospital Health System. “We’re confident that their support will enable us to meet our clinical and financial objectives.”

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