Sparrow joins collaborative to boost healthy outcomes

Published: Sept. 17, 2010

LANSING, Mich. -- Sparrow Health System today announced that it has joined the Premier healthcare alliance's Accountable Care Organization (ACO) Readiness Collaborative.

In joining this effort, Sparrow will begin the work necessary to implement essential healthcare reforms that deliver high-quality, patient centered care. As part of this collaborative, Sparrow expects to work toward creating ACOs in their markets, accepting accountability for the care delivered to patients by improving care coordination, efficiency, quality and patient satisfaction.

ACOs are defined as a group of providers coming together to accept accountability for a defined patient population's care. ACOs are designed to keep patients healthy and out of intensive care settings, while simultaneously shifting reimbursements to increasingly pay based on the achievement of top performance goals.

"Being part of the ACO Readiness Collaborative positions us well into the future as the healthcare delivery model is changing," said Mark L. Brett, Sparrow's senior vice president of affiliate operations.

The ACO Readiness Collaborative includes more than 40 health systems nationwide that will work together to test, measure and share best practices for creating ACOs and improving overall health and wellness in their communities. Collaborative members also study and work toward developing critical components of accountable care, including:

  • Patient-centered health homes that deliver primary care and manage health and wellness.
  • New approaches to primary, specialty and hospital care to reward care coordination, efficiency and productivity.
  • Tightly integrated relationships with specialists, ancillary providers and hospitals so they are similarly focused and aligned to achieve high-value outcomes.
  • Provider/payer partnerships and reimbursement models that incent improved outcomes, rewarding value over volume.
  • Population health information infrastructure, including health information exchanges, to enable care coordination across provider networks.

"By embarking on this effort to improve the quality, efficiency and satisfaction of patient care, Sparrow is putting patients first and starting an exciting journey to transform healthcare," said Premier President and CEO Susan DeVore.

"The work required to become an ACO will be extremely challenging and Sparrow deserves tremendous credit for its commitment to exploring necessary reforms that will help ensure our system is sustainable and highly effective. Sparrow is a true marketplace leader, with a commitment to community health."