On February 15, 2016 the Florida Accountable Care services reached a milestone that sets precedent for the wave of the future in healthcare. Much like a presidential inauguration FACS kicked off its partnership with UnitedHealthcare. Alongside Primary care providers, Ancillary health providers, honored guest, U.S Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) and David Lewis—CEO of UnitedHealthcare.
The next big thing in health care is here and eyes are on Florida Accountable Care Services as it places itself at the forefront of the changing health care system. UnitedHealthcare recognized FACS for “partnering around the needs of society.” The partnership involves more than 20,000 people in central Florida. Starting April 1st 2016 the partnership will solidify and the real work begins for FACS to apply their expertise in health care innovation and patient-centered programs to improve the health of UnitedHealthCare participants and advance toward overall population health management.
UnitedHealthcare has been evaluating how to increase quality, reduce medical costs, and improve patient outcomes, as well as share risk and responsibility for controlling medical cost trends since 2010. UHC noted Accountable Care organizations (ACOs) to be an important element of its value based contracting strategy. With a goal set to increase collaboration between the health care community and emphasis on shared risk accountability for improved outcomes UnitedHealthcare saw value in a partnership with FACS.
FACS long-standing history proves that it has been successful in generating true savings through an independent Physician led and Physician governed membership and a robust clinical integration network. FACS achieved success when it saved the federal government $ 15 million dollars by streamlining care. Something UnitedHealthcare sees tremendous value in.
The day was marked by a sea of smiles, handshakes and joyous energy. The event was kicked off with a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the grand opening of the Florida Emergent Care, located in the FACS hub building at the Medical Village in Winter Park, FL. A 24/7 care center hybrid between an emergency room and an urgent care facility that is able to provide services 10 times cheaper than going to an emergency room.
“These are big steps forwards,” said David Lewis CEO of UnitedHealthcare of Florida. This set the tone for the importance of the event. U.S Sen. Bill Nelson agreed stating in his speech: “The significance of today is that one of the largest health insurers in the state—with 3.5 million customers—United is teaming up with an ACO in order to bring those costs down and therefore to bring cost down in premiums.”
In response Dr. Sandeep Bajaj—Founder and CEO,FACS—stated: “We are very proud to work with them because I think that they’ll be toe to toe with us, as we want to challenge and push the envelope to make something really innovative and great for our patients. “
The event is a remarkable achievement for Florida Accountable Care Services since its inception in 2012. This is only one of many more achievements that are to come and to prove that FACS is working towards improving access to health information so that physicians are better able to coordinate a patient’s care across the care continuum. A major and notable part of the continuum is that FACS’ electronic health records are linked to the states system which provides results in real time.
As the health care system continues to change FACS is determined to continue its innovative approach. It will move forward making ripples that turn into waves of change for the better of the community that it serves. Partnering with health care giant UnitedHealthCare is only the beginning. FACS has also partnered with Cigna and Aetna. In a statement Dr. Sandeep Bajaj said: “Together, we expect to achieve even better health outcomes and improve patient satisfaction, while reducing the overall cost of care.”
By Greg Sanchez, Florida Accountable Care Service
Published: February 29, 2016