July 16, 2013- Detroit Medical Center Successfully Completes First Year Using ACO Model!
The Detroit Medical Center (DMC) is pleased to announce the successful completion of the first year of operation of its Michigan Pioneer Affordable Care Organization (ACO) Model. The Michigan Pioneer ACO is one of only 32 organizations nationally participating in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services accountable care initiative. This initiative is designed to provide more coordinated care to Medicare beneficiaries at a lower cost to the Medicare program, while ensuring that rigorous quality standards are achieved.
From 2010 to 2012, Medicare spending per beneficiary grew at 1.7% annually, while the Michigan Pioneer ACO was able to reduce the expenditures of its Medicare beneficiaries by more than 4.5% from its financial baseline.
"When we all embarked on the ACO journey, many of us were unsure and anxious," noted Dr. Mohamed Siddique, the Chairman of the ACO Board of Directors. "But we were willing to take on the challenge of changing the course of healthcare in Southeast Michigan. We knew we would take care of one of the sickest patient populations. We strengthened our resolve and embarked on this challenging course with a strong partnership between our physicians and the DMC hospitals."
The focus of the ACO is not on cutting required care but rather on improving care transitions and care coordination. A primary example is the effort undertaken to ensure that patients see their primary care physician within 7 days after hospital discharge. This helps to reduce the chances of the patient being readmitted to the hospital.
Additional care management services are provided to the higher risk patients of the ACO, at no additional cost to them, to help ensure that their care is optimized. As a result of the various care management programs instituted by the ACO, admissions, readmissions and claims expenditures decreased over the course of the year.
"All of us wholeheartedly embraced the concept that underlies accountable care," said Stuart Lockman, President of the Michigan Pioneer ACO. "Keeping the patient well is the right thing to do. All of us believe in the triple aim of better health and better healthcare for our patients, at a lower cost for the system. "
"From humble beginnings we built an infrastructure and put care processes in place, always putting patients first and foremost, and always asking the question of how we can improve."
Under the Pioneer ACO Model, patients continue to have complete freedom of choice to choose their doctors and other care providers. The ACO also is responsible for satisfying the reporting requirements for the 33 nationally-recognized core quality measures designated by Medicare for the Pioneer ACO Model.
Joe Mullany, DMC Chief Executive Officer, said: "We are all very proud of the work the ACO has accomplished. With the commitment of our physicians, and the support of our parent, Vanguard Health Systems, we have accomplished a great deal in a short amount of time. "
WHAT IS H1N1 INFLUENZA?
H1N1 influenza is a respiratory disease that is caused by a type A influenza virus. The current H1N1 virus contains unique genes from pig and human influenza viruses and hence is called the “Novel H1N1 Influenza Virus”. This strain of flu germ spreads from human to human and can cause illness.
Does H1N1 INFLUENZA pose special risks for pregnant women?
Pregnant women are at an increased risk of catching H1N1 or seasonal flu. Pregnant patients with H1N1 infection have an increased risk of complications. Although influenza viruses do not infect the baby while in the uterus, the high fever and any complications caused by the flu can potentially be harmful to the baby.
WHAT PRECAUTIONS CAN I TAKE TO PROTECT MYSELF AND MY UNBORN BABY?
The best way to protect yourself and your unborn baby is to have a vaccination (which is safe during pregnancy). You should also make sure you follow good hygiene practices including:
- Wash your hands often with soap and warm water. Alcohol-based gel hand cleaners are also good to use.
- Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
- Talk to your doctor about your concerns.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF H1N1 INFLUENZA?
The symptoms of H1N1 flu are similar to the symptoms of seasonal flu and may include acute onset of:
- Fever (greater than 100 F or 37.8 C)
- Sore Throat
- Stuffy nose
- Some people have reported diarrhea and vomiting associated with H1N1 flu.
WILL THE SYMPTOMS BE THE SAME IF I AM PREGNANT?
Yes, the symptoms of flu will be the same as in women who are not pregnant.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I GET SICK?
If you get sick with flu-like symptoms, stay home, limit contact with others, and call your doctor as soon as possible.
- Treat any fever right away. Tylenol® (acetaminophen) is the best treatment of fever in pregnancy.
- Get plenty of rest and drink clear fluids.
- Your doctor may test you for flu or will decide if you need medications to treat the flu.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash and cleanse your hands.
- Clean hands often with soap and water or alcohol- based hand rub.
- Do not go to work, school, or other public places while you are ill.
- Avoid close contact with other people.
- Get emergency medical care right away if you have trouble breathing, chest pain, purple or blue lips or skin, severe vomiting and are dehydrated and/or dizzy, unresponsive or confused.
IS IT OK TO BREAST FEED MY BABY IF I AM SICK?
- Do not stop breastfeeding if you are ill. This will help protect your baby from infection.
- Be careful not to cough or sneeze in the baby’s face, wash your hands often.
- Your doctor might ask you to wear a mask to keep from spreading this new virus to your baby.
- If you are too sick to breastfeed, pump and have someone give the expressed milk to your baby.
IS THERE A VACCINE FOR H1N1 INFLUENZA?
Yes, an H1N1 virus vaccine is expected to be available in mid- to late October 2009. The CDC recommends this vaccine for pregnant women when it first becomes available. This vaccine has been tested in pregnant women and found to be safe and effective.
REMEMBER: The seasonal flu vaccine is not expected to protect against the H1N1 flu, therefore individuals are encouraged to get both types of vaccines.