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Use template to improve negotiations, monitor contracts

Provider organizations seeking to improve managed care contracting can take a page from The Cleveland Clinic Health System (CCHS), which developed a template to standardize contracting terms and increase its leverage in negotiations with payers following the merger of three health systems in the late 1990s. CCHS, anchored by the venerable Cleveland Clinic Foundation (CCF), is comprised of 10 hospitals in northeastern Ohio and a hospital and two medical groups in Florida. The system, which encompasses 1,750 physicians in Cleveland and 175 in Florida, handles some 150,000 inpatient admissions and more than two million outpatient visits annually.