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Inside an ACO-Like Partnership

Jacqueline Fellows, for HealthLeaders Media, March 4, 2013

Philadelphia-based Independence Blue Cross (IBC) says a pay-for-performance payment initiative with Abington Health, launched a year ago, is on track for success primarily because its physicians are engaged.

Doug Chaet, senior vice president of contracting and provider networks for IBC, says Abington is committed to the new model of healthcare that coordinates care to keep patients healthier.

"They really are taking this seriously from a practitioner perspective. One of the problems, historically, I think, with pay-for-performance programs in general is that a provider and a payer can reach agreement and they agree to hit a certain target, but the providers aren't always engaged and as committed to the performance as Abington has been, and that in and of itself is a big success."

Chaet is careful to call IBC's Integrated Provider Performance Incentive Plan (IPPIP), an accountable care payment model, not an accountable care organization.

"A lot of people these days refer to accountable care as any kind of program where providers are accountable for the cost and quality of care delivered, and I think that's why we have termed IPPIP an accountable care payment model because that's exactly what it does," he says.

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