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New Hospitals and Health Care Providers Join Successful, Cutting-Edge Federal Initiative That Cuts C - Monday, April 11, 2016

Medicare Accountable Care Organization Initiatives to Improve How the Health System Cares for Patients

 

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced 121 new participants - representing 49 states and the District of Columbia - in an innovative initiative - Medicare Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) - designed to improve the care patients receive in the health care system and lowers costs.

 

HealthEast and Entira Family Clinics, members of the Community Health Network (CHN), announce that CHN was selected as one of nearly 150 renewing Medicare Shared Savings Program Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs), providing Medicare beneficiaries with access to high-quality, coordinated care across the United States, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). That brings the total to 434 Shared Savings Program ACOs serving over 7.7 million beneficiaries.

 

Doctors, hospitals, and health care providers establish ACOs to work together to provide higher-quality coordinated care to their patients while helping to slow health care cost growth. Community Health Network will be one of 434 ACOs participating in the Shared Savings Program as of January 1, 2016. Beneficiaries who see health care providers in ACOs always have the freedom to choose doctors inside or outside of the ACO. ACOs receive a portion of the Medicare savings generated from lowering the growth in healthcare costs as long as they also meet standards for high- quality are.

 

"People across America are going to be better cared for when they go to their health care providers because these hospitals and providers have made a commitment to innovation, a commitment to change how they do business and care for patients," HHS Secretary Sylvia Matthews Burwell said. "Medicare and the health care system as a whole is moving toward paying providers based on the quality, rather than just the quantity of care they give patients. The three new ACO initiatives that are being launched today mark an important step forward in this effort."

 

Since ACOs began participating in the program in early 2012, thousands of health care providers have signed on to participate in the program, working together to provide better care to Medicare's seniors and people with disabilities. The new and renewing ACOs will bring approximately 15,000 additional physicians into the ACO program starting January 1, 2016.

 

ACOs are delivering better care, and they continue to show promising results in cost savings. In 2014, they had a combined total net program savings of $411 million for 333 Medicare Shared Savings Program (Shared Savings Program) ACOs and 20 Pioneer ACOs. Based on 2014 quality and financial performance results for Shared Savings Program ACOs who started the program in 2012, 2013, and 2014, ACOs that reported in both 2013 and 2014 improved on 27 of the 33 quality measures, including patients' ratings of clinicians' communication, beneficiaries' rating of their doctors, screening for tobacco use and cessation, screening for high blood pressure, and Electronic Health Record use. Shared Savings Program ACOs also outperformed group practices reporting quality on 18 out of 22 measures.


Ultimately, this announcement is about delivering better care, spending dollars more wisely, and having healthier people and communities. ACOs drive progress in the way care is provided by improving the coordination and integration of health care, and improving the health of patients with a priority placed on prevention and wellness. 

 

Dr. Timothy Hernandez selected to Mpls St. Paul Magazine's Top Doc list - Monday, July 06, 2015

Timothy Hernandez, M.D. has been selected for the Mpls. St. Paul Magazine 2015 Top Doctors List for the third time. He was nominated by his peers, 5,000 local doctors and nurses, as being among the best health care providers in the Twin Cities.

Recently, Dr. Hernandez was awarded the Citizen’s Medal of Merit by Mendota Heights Mayor Krebsbach.  Dr. Hernandez who is also an assistant football coach at St. Thomas Academy worked with the trainer to keep a young boy alive after his heart stopped last year until emergency personnel could arrive.

Dr. Hernandez has worked at Entira Family Clinics-West St. Paul for 27 years and he is the Clinical Practice Medical Director for the organization.  He is also currently serving as Co-Chair of the Measurement and Reporting Committee for MN Community Measurement as well as an Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine at the University of Minnesota.

 

His passion for family medicine is rooted in his family experiences.  As the oldest of 9 and the father of 7 children, he has witnessed the influence of the family on the well being of its members.

 

“I am fascinated by the interplay of psychological, psychosocial, and physical dynamics on the health of the individual.  I am thrilled with the privilege of assisting at a birth and awed at my small role in helping children grow to adulthood, “explains Dr. Hernandez.

Congratulations, Dr. Hernandez!

 

Dr. Theresa Wollan selected to Mpls St. Paul Magazine's Top Doc list - Monday, July 06, 2015

Theresa Wollan, M.D. has been selected for the Mpls. St. Paul Magazine 2014 Top Doctors List for the fourth year in a row.  She was nominated by her peers, 5,000 local doctors and nurses, as being among the best health care providers in the Twin Cities.
Dr. Wollan has worked at Entira Family Clinics for 23 years and specifically, at the Vadnais Heights Clinic for 16 years. She enjoys caring for the families in her practice and bringing new family members into this world.

“Practicing family medicine gives me the opportunity to care for multi- generations of families, from delivering babies to caring for great-grandparents, “explains Dr. Wollan.  She also enjoys partnering with her patients in making decisions about their health care.

A Stillwater resident, Dr. Wollan (Stickler) enjoys time with her family and being a hockey, lacrosse and baseball mom. 

Congratulations, Dr. Wollan!

 

Dr. David Thorson selected to Mpls St. Paul Magazine's Top Doc list - Monday, July 06, 2015

David Thorson, M.D. has been selected for the Mpls. St. Paul Magazine 2015 Top Doctors List for the 8th time. He was nominated by his peers, 5,000 local doctors and nurses, as being among the best health care providers in the Twin Cities.

Dr. Thorson has been part of the Entira Family Clinics, White Bear Lake- Banning clinic for 25 years. He is currently a Medical Director for the organization and President –Elect of the Minnesota Medical Association.  He was in the past, President of the Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians.

Dr. Thorson treats the full range of family practice patients from infants to geriatrics with a special interest in sports/musculoskeletal medicine.  

He states “I promote lifelong fitness and wellness and have a strong interest in sports medicine. I want to help my patients who are dealing with injuries maximize function and minimize time away from their daily activities such as sports, work, or school.”

Dr. Thorson enjoys skiing.  He is currently the team doctor for the Saint Paul Saints and he is the team doctor for Mahtomedi High School, USA Cup Soccer, Twin Cities Marathon and day event coverage for the Minnesota State High School League.

Congratulations, Dr. Thorson!