TPMG receives AMGA Acclaim Award for transforming health care through leadership, technology

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The American Medical Group Association (AMGA) today announced that the recipient of the 2013 AMGA Acclaim Award is The Permanente Medical Group (TPMG) for "Transforming Health Care through Leadership and Technology," an innovative initiative that achieves superior performance through physician leadership, advanced information technology, and a mission-driven culture of collaboration. The award, granted through AMGA's philanthropic arm, the American Medical Group Foundation (AMGF), honors organizations that are meeting the Institute of Medicine (IOM) Aims for Improvement and are taking the necessary steps to become a high-performing health system as defined by AMGA. It will be presented at AMGA's Institute for Quality Leadership Annual Conference, being held September 25-27, 2013 at The Phoenician in Scottsdale, Arizona.

This award honors TPMG's commitment to quality and service excellence and its demonstrated success in meeting the six IOM aims. Through these achievements, TPMG has transformed care delivery, making the patient experience both "high tech and high touch." As a result, the physicians of TPMG have

•Reduced patients' cardiovascular mortality 30% below the surrounding community;
•Achieved nation-leading success in hypertension control;
•Decreased colon cancer mortality through effective screening; and
•Earned the trust and confidence of their patients by providing rapid access to care in person, by phone, or through advanced information technology tools.

As a result of these and other initiatives, hospital mortality has declined dramatically and member satisfaction in the TPMG health plan is the highest in Northern California. In addition, TPMG is viewed as a highly desirable place to practice medicine, as evidenced by the fact that the number of new physician applicants for positions in TPMG is now ten times the number of available positions. Despite these gains, the 8,000 physicians of TPMG recognize that their journey is not complete. They are committed to accelerating the organization's pace of change in their quest to achieve high-quality, affordable care for all and to being a model for patient-centered care in the nation.

Two additional groups were announced as Acclaim Award Honorees:

Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group set ambitious goals to address all areas of the Triple Aim. The organization's vision is simple: to deliver more value to their patients than any other health system and become the national model for healthcare quality, service, and efficiency. To pursue this vision, they established audacious goals to be #1 in those areas. They created new leadership roles with clear responsibilities and developed a tactical operating plan with distinct accountabilities and firm deadlines. Investments and improvements were made in three main areas of infrastructure: people, data and technology, and facilities. As a result of these efforts, the organization currently is:

•Ranked 1st in its region and 15th in the nation per National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) Health Insurance Plan Rankings;
•Rated by NCQA as #1 in the nation for Breast Cancer Screening, Childhood Immunizations Hepatitis A, Avoidance of Antibiotic Treatment in Adults with Acute Bronchitis, and Comprehensive Diabetes Care: Nephropathy Screening;
•Outpacing all local competitors by having 44 HEDIS Effectives of Care measures in the 90th percentile;
•The highest performing organization in its region on Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) survey questions such as "Personal Doctor Rating" and "Specialist Rating"; and
•At a 1.5% medical services cost trend, down nearly 80% from 2008.

Wilmington Health, PLLC's drive to become a high-performing health system can best be described as a complete transformation. Starting with specific goal- and objective-setting by the organizations leadership, Wilmington Health has engaged every team member in the effort to evaluate and improve all processes that impact the quality of care delivered, the cost for that care, and the patient experience. The change realized to date has come from creating a culture focused on providing the best possible health care to patients and becoming an example for others to follow, both internally and externally. Wilmington Health intends to vigilantly follow the data to continually provide assessment of current strategies and direction for future improvements. Some of their improvements include:

•Improvement in efficiencies in total cost per Medicare beneficiary of 12% compared to their ACO cohorts;
•23% reduction in hospitalizations, admits per 1,000;
•12% reduction in 30-day readmissions;
•27% reduction in COPD admissions; and
•32% reductions in CHF admissions.

"These organizations led efforts to improve their ability to provide patients the health care they need, want, and deserve," said Donald W. Fisher, Ph.D., AMGA's president and chief executive officer 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."

"The groups honored with this award exemplify the best quality health care in the United States, and the efforts of multispecialty medical groups and other organized systems of care to provide the right care at the right time in the most efficient manner," continued Fisher. "Coordinated, value-based care has been the hallmark of AMGA member groups, and programs like the Acclaim Award help these groups continue their innovative work and communicate their successes to the healthcare community to better serve their patients. It is our hope that medical groups throughout the country will learn about the work of these innovators and be inspired to implement similar programs in their medical groups."


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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