Securing Physician Alignment
Partnering with Cardiovascular Specialists to Meet the Challenges of Accountable Care
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By reading this study, members will:
- Understand the feasible options for aligning with physicians in today’s marketplace
- Learn how hospitals have structured co-management, Clinical Integration, and employment agreements to maximize return
- View lessons from early adopters of bundled payments and ACOs and understand the impact of these models on CV services
- Discover how accountable care will alter the role of CV specialists in the marketplace and require closer integration with primary care physicians
Imperative to align with CV specialists never more urgent
As regulatory scrutiny over hospital and physician partnerships heightens and volumes remain difficult to capture, CV programs are searching for new methods to align with specialists. At the same time, physicians facing downward pressure on reimbursement and desiring improved work-life balance are seeking safe harbor within hospitals. Indeed, the marketplace has already begun to shift with the uptick in specialist employment and dependence on co-management agreements. Furthermore, reform centers on total cost management achieved through closer hospital-physician alliances and care coordination. Programs that strengthen physician relationships today will be best positioned for market leadership in the coming era of accountable care.
Partnering for today: Optimizing physician alignment models
Legal scrutiny and operational difficulties have winnowed the number of options by which hospitals and physicians may align. For these reasons, new models are surging in popularity. The first section of this study examines various options for aligning with specialists that are prevalent in today’s marketplace including IT deployment, professional services agreements (PSAs), co-management, Clinical Integration, and specialist employment. In addition, seven lessons provide guidance on structuring the contracts to ensure maximum value for both parties.
Preparing for tomorrow: Migrating to next-generation alignment
The stakes for partnering with specialists will be even higher as the implementation of accountable care places a premium on physician alignment as a means to affect more efficient and coordinated care. To thrive in this emerging environment, CV programs and specialists will need to assume a level of functional integration far deeper and broader than in place today. The second half of this study examines the impact of accountable care on physician alignment by examining two risk-based payment methodologies: bundled payments and shared savings programs (i.e., ACOs). Payment innovations significantly alter traditional business models by placing a premium on cost effectiveness and care coordination which may result in reduced reliance on specialty care. In part, these aims are achieved by reinvigorating the role of primary care to comprehensively manage patients. Thus, this section provides lessons for encouraging multidisciplinary alignment between CV specialists, primary care physicians, and the care team.
Access the full study to learn more
Securing Physician Alignment offers a detailed look at feasible options to align with cardiovascular physicians, strategies to enhance existing partnerships, early outcomes from CV bundled payment and ACOs, and imperatives to ensure migration to next-generation alignment.
Requiring Greater Interdependence Between Hospitals and CV Specialists