PA Hospitals Mull Health Plan Launch

Margaret Dick Tocknell, for HealthLeaders Media , July 31, 2013

The trio, which includes 10 hospitals and 2,500 beds, currently operate individual self-funded healthcare benefit plans and use a variety of third party administrators to manage the plans. The joint venture is expected to centralize that function into a single TPA, according to Freedman.

The group hopes to develop capabilities, including information systems and support, to grow the initiative, he says. Other providers could participate on an equity basis. The initiative could also permit other companies and populations to access its provider network "through some vehicle" as subscribers.

The group plans to look at a variety of payment plans that could appeal to larger populations, including bundling, shared savings, and accountable care organizations. Freedman says the group is also open to partnering with an insurer to develop products.

Combining their efforts will provide Einstein, Abington Health, and Aria Health with the scale needed to develop the infrastructure to support population health and improve healthcare delivery, including care coordination and inpatient and outpatient care transitions. "None of us are able to do this on a comprehensive basis today," says Freedman.

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