Aurora Health Care has partnered with UnitedHealthCare to launch an accountable care program for people in the Milwaukee area who have signed up for United’s Medicare Advantage plans.
The partnership will allow both organizations to share data on patients with the goal of improving care, the organizations wrote in a joint statement released Wednesday.
“UnitedHealthcare and Aurora Health Care are working together to help people receive more personalized and better connected care, which will significantly enhance people’s ability to live healthier lives,” said Chris Abbott, CEO of UnitedHealthcare Medicare & Retirement in Wisconsin.
It's the second time this year Aurora has partnered with a large insurance company. The health care organization announced in April it had formed a joint-venture insurance company with Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Wisconsin called Wisconsin Collaborative Insurance Co.
“Our focus is on helping our people live well, and we know that by leveraging our care management philosophy with population health analytics we can help increase quality and efficiency of patient outcomes while reducing redundancy and health care costs,” said Titus Muzi, Aurora Health Care’s senior vice president of managed care contracting.
Muzi has more than two decades of experience in the insurance industry. he's worked for Anthem, United and also Humana Inc.
"The vibe right now really is aligning incentives with the interests of insurance members and our patients in mind," Muzi said. "I think you'll see more of this as we go along now in the next five years and we move toward managing populations. That entails working with multiple payers. UnitedHealthCare and Anthem are two of the largest payers in the state and we've had good strong relationships with them in the past."
The health care industry is currently based around a fee-for-service model, but Muzi said that could change in the coming years as health care organizations invest more and more in preventative care. In theory, helping patients prevent illnesses will result in fewer and less expensive claims filed with insurance companies, which in turn, could reduce patient premiums and cost of care.
"We know that we have to manage more effectively," Muzi said. "We have a system that's built around sick care. we want to be on the front end of moving toward treating populations. We're aligning our incentives with their incentives. This is an agreement that will allow us to exchange information with them, identify gaps in care, identify populations that have specific chronic diseases and provide a better quality of care."