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SCL Health System Selected for CMS’Bundled Payments for Care Improvement

February 05, 2013

Initiative to build on expertise in payment redesign for care improvement

Media Contacts:
SCL Health System
Cheston Turbyfill, Director, Public Affairs
303-813-5091 or 312-952-0837 mobile

DENVER — (Feb. 5, 2013) – SCL Health System, a faith-based, nonprofit organization, announced today it will begin participating in the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement initiative, led by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).

This initiative is aimed at lowering the cost for Medicare patients by testing how bundling payments for episodes of care can result in more coordination among clinicians. The initiative is a component of the Affordable Care Act aimed at reducing overall healthcare costs in the U.S.

“SCL Health System is pleased we are chosen to participate in the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement initiative,” said Debbie Welle-Powell, Vice President, Payer Contracting and Strategy for SCL Health System. “Our organization has been working for many years to help redesign care and payment models to improve our patients’ outcomes and lower costs.”

In 2009, SCL Health System was one of the few organizations selected to pilot the Acute Care Episode (ACE) Demonstration Program for certain cardiovascular procedures. Participation in the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement initiative will allow SCL Health System to continue building upon work in this arena.

The Bundled Payments for Care Improvement initiative includes four models of bundling payments, varying by the types of health care providers involved and the services included in the bundle. Seven care sites within the system will participate in testing Model 4 while collaborating with physician partners. Depending on the model type, CMS will bundle payments for services beneficiaries receive during an episode of care, encouraging hospitals, physicians, post-acute facilities, and other providers as applicable to work together to improve health outcomes and lower costs.

“The purpose of these initiatives is to help us achieve the ‘triple aim’ goals of improving the experience of care and the health of populations all while reducing per capita costs,” said Welle-Powell. “This model is the pathway to the future of care delivery in the U.S. and we are thrilled to be a part of it.”

Today’s announcement marks the start of Phase 1 of Models 2, 3, and 4. In Phase 1 (January - July 2013), more than 100 participants partnering with more than 400 provider organizations, will receive new data from CMS on care patterns and engage in shared learning in how to improve care. Phase 1 participants are generally expected to become participants in Phase 2, in which approved participants opt to take on financial risk for episodes of care starting in July 2013, pending contract finalization and completion of CMS’ standard program integrity reviews.

About SCL Health System

SCL Health System (SCLHS), based in Denver, is a faith-based, nonprofit health care organization operating 11 hospitals, four safety net clinics, one children’s mental health treatment center and more than 100 ambulatory service centers in four states – California, Colorado, Kansas and Montana. Our $2.7 billion health network is dedicated to improving the health of the communities and individuals we serve, especially those who are poor and vulnerable. On an annual basis, SCLHS provides more than $220 million in community benefit, including services for the poor, health screenings, educational programs, community donations and research. SCLHS was founded by the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth, who opened their first hospital in 1864. To learn more, visit www.sclhealthsystem.org.