Aetna, Carilion Clinic Building ACO in VA

John Commins, March 11, 2011

Aetna and Roanoke, VA-based not-for-profit Carilion Clinic said this week they are collaborating to build an accountable care organization in southwest Virginia that will feature co-branded insurance plans for individuals and businesses.

Carilion CEO Edward G. Murphy, MD, told HealthLeaders Media Thursday that the collaboration was the logical next step for the health system because "we realized there was only so far you could go being a provider alone and deliver the kind of value that you want for the community."

"It became increasingly apparent to us that you needed a fundamentally different relationship with payersand be a partner in this regard," he says. "You have to think about what you and they bring to the table as being complementary and not adversarial and trying to jointly provide services and value to patients in common."

The Aetna-Carilion collaboration is expected to include co-branded commercial healthcare plans for businesses and individuals later this year, and new payment models that encourage providers to share accountability to improve patients' health, including rewards for meeting quality targets and shared costs savings, Aetna and Carilion said in a joint statement.

John Commins

John Commins is a senior editor at HealthLeaders Media.

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