UnitedHealthcare on Monday announced its partnership with national accountable care organization Aledade to provide high-quality care to Medicare Advantage members through its network of primary care doctors in Arkansas.
ACOs are networks of doctors who work together to better coordinate care under a system that rewards them for quality of care and patient health outcomes rather than volume of services delivered, the companies said.
The Aledade Arkansas ACO includes nine independent primary care practices, and the partnership could benefit more than 15,000 people enrolled in UnitedHealthcare’s Medicare health plans, according to a news release.
The Aledade Arkansas ACO includes:
- Malvern Family Medical Clinic in Malvern
- The Winston Clinic, P.A. in Sheridan
- James E. Zini D.O., P.A. in Mountain View
- Malvern Diagnostic Clinic in Malvern
- Cowherd Family Medical Center in Heber Springs
- Randy D. Walker M.D. in De Queen
- SAMA Healthcare Services P.A. in El Dorado
- Autumn Road Family Practice in Little Rock
- Arkansas Central Primary Care Practice in Jacksonville
The two companies said many patients – particularly those with complex or chronic illnesses – find they sometimes have to connect information from each of their doctor’s visits themselves and may receive duplicate tests or health care that aren't coordinated.
UnitedHealthcare shares data to help map the many steps in a patient’s health care treatment. Through their partnership, the companies will use that data together to better coordinate patients’ health care, by identifying clear, actionable data specific to individual patients’ health needs and potential missed care opportunities.
“By partnering with high-performing clinics in Arkansas, Aledade has brought to the table an extremely sophisticated and high-tech skill set to help our physicians treat Medicare patients in ways never before possible,” Dr. Matthew Callaway of SAMA Healthcare Services said in the release. “This new partnership will enable us to use that same technology for UnitedHealthcare’s Medicare plan participants. Together, we are making great strides in our mission to continually improve health care throughout Arkansas.”
The companies said their partnership also improves their ability to identify patients at high risk and help those patients take their needed medications, avoid emergency room visits and hospital re-admissions, and better manage their conditions.
According to the release, more than 15 million people enrolled in UnitedHealthcare plans across the country have access to accountable care programs. Its total payments to physicians and hospitals that are tied to value-based arrangements have tripled in the last three years to more than $54 billion. UnitedHealthcare expects that figure to reach $65 billion by the end of next year.