HealthCare Partners and Cigna Start Accountable Care Program in Southern California to Improve Health Outcomes and Lower Costs

Wed Apr 3, 2013 10:00am EDT

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http://pdf.reuters.com/htmlnews/8knews.asp?i=43059c3bf0e37541&u=urn:newsml:reuters.com:20130403:nBw035171a

* Consumers benefit from improved care coordination and greater emphasis on
preventive care 
* Doctors are rewarded for improving patient health and lowering medical costs 
* Program includes a HealthCare Partners care coordination team including a
registered nurse care manager aligned to Cigna case managers

BLOOMFIELD, Conn. & TORRANCE, Calif.--(Business Wire)--
Cigna (NYSE:CI) and HealthCare Partners Medical Group in Southern California
have launched a collaborative accountable care initiative to improve patient
access to healthcare, enhance care coordination, and achieve the "triple aim" of
improved health, affordability and patient experience. The program became
effective April 1. 

Collaborative accountable care is Cigna's approach to accomplishing the same
population health goals as accountable care organizations, or ACOs. The program
could benefit as many as 10,000 individuals covered by a Cigna health plan who
receive care from among some 1,200 HealthCare Partners primary care physicians,
nurse practitioners, and physician assistants. HealthCare Partners medical
clinics and primary and specialty care affiliated physicians are located in the
Greater Los Angeles Metro area including the San Fernando Valley, Pasadena/San
Gabriel Valley, South Bay, Long Beach and Orange County. 

"HealthCare Partners works every day to improve patient health, and Cigna's
focus on prevention and improving health care quality makes them a strong
organization for us to work with to achieve the 'triple aim,'" said Tom Paulsen,
M.D., executive medical director, HealthCare Partners Medical Group. "HealthCare
Partners applies best practices in patient care and has continued to improve
clinical quality metrics for patients seen by our employed and independently
affiliated physicians while bending the cost curve." 

Under the program, patients continue to go to their current physician and care
team and benefit from preventive care programs and disease management programs.
HealthCare Partners monitors and coordinates all aspects of a patient`s medical
care. Patients most likely to see immediate benefits from the program are those
actively engaged with their care teams and those who need help managing chronic
conditions, such as diabetes or heart disease. 

Critical to the program`s benefits is HealthCare Partners` coordinated care
model supported by a wide array of resources. The HealthCare Partners care
management team is aligned to a team of Cigna case managers to ensure a high
degree of collaboration when needed. All aimed at improving the health of the
individual, HealthCare Partners clinical programs include disease management
programs for diabetes, heart disease and other conditions or lifestyle
management programs, such as programs for tobacco cessation, weight management
and stress management. Together the collaboration will reduce potential gaps in
care such as patients not refilling prescription drugs or patients overdue for
health screenings and immunizations. 

"Our goal is to change the U.S. health care system from one that pays for the
volume of care provided to one that emphasizes the quality and results of that
care," said Gene Rapisardi, president and general manager for Cigna in Southern
California. "We believe this change will lead to better health, lower costs and
increased satisfaction for both patients and their doctors." 

The principles of the patient-centered medical home are the foundation of
Cigna's collaborative accountable care initiatives. Cigna then builds on that
foundation with a strong focus on collaboration and communication with physician
practices. Cigna is now engaged in nearly 60 collaborative accountable care
initiatives in 24 states, encompassing more than 650,000 Cigna customers and
more than 23,000 doctors, including more than 11,000 primary care physicians and
more than 11,500 specialists. 

Cigna launched its first collaborative accountable care program in 2008 and its
goal is to have 100 of them in place with one million customers in 2014. 

About HealthCare Partners

HealthCare Partners, LLC, a wholly owned and independently operated subsidiary
of DaVita HealthCare Partners, has operations in California, Nevada, Florida,
and New Mexico. HealthCare Partners manages and operates medical groups and
affiliated physician networks nationally in its pursuit of excellent quality
healthcare delivered in a dignified and compassionate manner. HealthCare
Partners operates HealthCare Partners Affiliates Medical Group (California),
HealthCare Partners of Nevada, JSA Healthcare Corporation (Florida), ABQ Health
Partners (NM), The Camden Group (a national consulting firm), and the HealthCare
Partners Institute for Applied Research and Education. HealthCare Partners cares
for more than 750,000 patients in four states. For more information, please
visit www.healthcarepartners.com. 

About Cigna

Cigna Corporation (NYSE: CI) is a global health service company dedicated to
helping people improve their health, well-being and sense of security. All
products and services are provided exclusively by or through operating
subsidiaries of Cigna Corporation, including Connecticut General Life Insurance
Company, Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company, Life Insurance Company of
North America and Cigna Life Insurance Company of New York. Such products and
services include an integrated suite of health services, such as medical,
dental, behavioral health, pharmacy, vision, supplemental benefits, and other
related products including group life, accident and disability insurance. Cigna
maintains sales capability in 30 countries and jurisdictions, and has
approximately 78 million customer relationships throughout the world. To learn
more about Cigna, including links to follow us on Facebook or Twitter, visit
www.cigna.com.

Cigna
Amy Turkington, 440-934-5385
amy.turkington@cigna.com
or
HealthCare Partners
Robert Klein, 310-630-4126
rklein@healthcarepartners.com



Copyright Business Wire 2013

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