Clinically Integrated Network Leverages Analytics

JUL 16, 2014
9:57am ET
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Data analytics can meet the needs of both individuals and populations. Just ask Michael Hunt, M.D., CMO and CMIO at St. Vincent's Health Partners, a physician-hospital organization in Bridgeport, Conn.

“A lot of organizations can say they are clinically integrated,” Hunt told an audience at Health Data Management’s Healthcare Analytics Symposium in Chicago. However, St. Vincent’s PHO--which includes a flagship medical center and more than 300 physicians--has the distinction of being the first organization in the country to be accredited by URAC as a clinically integrated network, focusing on individual patients and populations in order to provide high-quality, cost-effective patient care.

St. Vincent’s clinically integrated network manages patients and populations through analytics to limit the risk of over-utilization and demonstrate high-quality care. “The more integrated you are the closer the working relationship you have with all the facilities in the network and the better aligned you are,” Hunt asserts. “To be successful, we have to get data from multiple sources and today it is disparate. A physician’s office typically gets three data sources from commercial labs, they have an EHR, they have a practice management system, and they may have three to five different payers. On average, there might be eight data sources that we have to collect from every member of our organization--at a minimum.”

The organization requires providers to work together to share clinical data and actively coordinate care. As a result, St. Vincent’s is able to create timely, accurate, and actionable information enabling providers to address individual patient needs and to improve overall population health. “The key for us is working with patients everyday through a specific process and managing the population,” says Hunt. “So, we’re managing the patients at the medical services level and we’re empowering physicians and hospitals to do the best job they can and--at the same time--we’re really empowering the whole system to handle the population at large.”

Toward that end, Hunt reveals that St. Vincent’s has copyrighted a “playbook” that identifies 140 transitions of care, detailing evidence-based care guidelines and metrics, as well as laying out the policies and procedures needed to demonstrate clinical integration. “That means that if a patient is discharged from the hospital and goes home or if they’re discharged from the hospital and go to a skilled nursing facility, we have defined the minimum amount of data that is required for that patient to move from point A to point B, and we hold our membership accountable.”

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