6-System Partnership to Cover 9 in 10 WI Residents

John Commins, August 11, 2014

Jeff Thompson, MD, CEO of Gundersen Health System and chair of the as yet unnamed partnership—not a merger or an acquisition—discusses the coalition's intention to improve quality of care, reduce costs, and collectively "get better faster."



Jeff Thompson, MD
CEO of Gundersen Health System

Six Wisconsin healthcare systems that provide healthcare access to 90% of the people in that state have formed a strategic partnership to improve clinical quality and lower costs.

Jeff Thompson, MD, CEO of La Crosse-based Gundersen Health System and chair of the partnership's board of directors, stresses that the affiliation "is a true partnership among our six organizations, not a merger or consolidation. It will allow us to more rapidly learn from each other, share best practices, and serve the needs of patients and families more efficiently."

The partnership's founding members are:

  • Aspirus – Wausau
  • Aurora Health Care – Milwaukee
  • Bellin Health – Green Bay
  • Gundersen Health System – La Crosse
  • ThedaCare – Appleton
  • UW Health – Madison

A commercial insurance plan for the six organizations is being offered through Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield's Blue Priority network, and will be available through brokers, the federal Health Insurance Marketplace, and private health insurance exchanges.

The partnership intends to expand coverage options, and is evaluating other insurance carriers and administrative products. The partners are also open to extending membership to other healthcare organizations that can demonstrate delivering quality, value-based care.  

Thompson says the partnership was developed to build on and advance clinical quality, efficiency, and customer experience attributes that are documented and shared among the six organizations.

John Commins

John Commins is a senior editor at HealthLeaders Media.


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