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Hackensack University Medical Center Applies to Form an Accountable Care Organization (ACO)

January 30, 2012 01:51 PM

Hackensack University Medical Center has submitted an application to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to create an accountable care organization (ACO). The HackensackUMC application includes participation from 122 physicians in Northern New Jersey. In addition, there are 457 physicians within the Hackensack Physician Alliance who are aligned in preparation for future ACO contracts.

“At HackensackUMC, we are dedicated to providing superior clinical patient care that is accountable, cost-efficient and coordinated in the best way possible,” said Robert C. Garrett, president and chief executive officer of HackensackUMC. “The creation of this accountable care organization will ensure that HackensackUMC patients are offered a network of the very best physicians who are focused on the entire spectrum of care for that patient.”

As part of the Affordable Care Act, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have established a shared savings program to better coordinate care through physicians, thereby improving performance and reducing unnecessary costs. ACOs are being developed to improve patients’ health by engaging patients in their own care and focusing on wellness. The physicians within ACOs are encouraged to collaborate in treatment by offering follow-up care to ensure the patient was seen by a specialist or is taking their medication properly.

                “We take care of patients when they are sick, but we must also focus on keeping patients well when they are not in the hospital,” said Ihor S. Sawczuk, M.D., executive vice president and chief medical officer at HackensackUMC. “An accountable care organization means that this designated group of physicians will focus on the entire continuum of care for our patients – inpatient care, outpatient care and follow-up care.”

                HackensackUMC has formed their ACO around five of its patient-centered medical homes (physician offices) whose medical staff understands the significance of providing superior quality care in a cost-efficient manner. If the application is accepted, HackensackUMC’s ACO will begin operating on April 1, 2012.

About Hackensack University Medical Center
Hackensack University Medical Center is a 775-bed not-for-profit, tertiary care, teaching and research hospital and provides the largest number of admissions in New Jersey. Founded in 1888 with 12 beds and as Bergen County's first hospital, Hackensack University Medical Center has demonstrated more than a century of growth and progress. Hackensack University Medical Center is a nationally recognized healthcare organization offering patients the most comprehensive services, state-of-the-art technologies, and facilities. Honors include being named one of America’s 50 Best Hospitals by HealthGrades® for five years in a row. Hackensack University Medical Center is the only hospital in New Jersey, New York, and New England to receive this honor for five consecutive years. Hackensack University Medical Center was also named one of the 50 Best Hospitals in America by Becker's Hospital Review. U.S. News & World Report ranked Hackensack University Medical Center eighth in the New York Metro Area in its first-ever Best Hospitals metro area rankings, giving it the top ranking out of all the New Jersey hospitals listed. Additionally, Hackensack University Medical Center has been ranked in geriatrics, heart and heart surgery, and cancer in U.S. News & World Report's 2011-12 Best Hospitals. The U.S. News Media Group also named the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital to its “2011-12 Best Children’s Hospitals” list – ranking as one of the top 50 in the specialty of neurology and neurosurgery – the first hospital in the State of New Jersey ever to be ranked in a Best Children’s Hospitals specialty. Hackensack University Medical Center is a Magnet® recognized hospital for nursing excellence, first in New Jersey, second in the nation, receiving its fourth designation in April 2009. Hackensack University Medical Center is the hometown hospital of the New York Giants and the New Jersey Nets.



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