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UT Southwestern, Genesis Form New ACO for North Texas

September 29, 2015
by Heather Landi
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UT Southwestern Clinically Affiliated Physicians and Genesis Accountable Physician Network have announced a new accountable care organization (ACO) for North Texas.

The UT Southwestern Accountable Care Network (UTSACN) will bring together primary and specialty care physicians, hospitals and payers with the aim of providing better access to care and better clinical quality to patients across a 400-square-mile area of North Texas. The network consists of faculty physicians at UT Southwestern Medical Center and independent physicians practicing in Dallas County and surrounding areas who are a part of the Genesis Accountable Physician Network.

“This new network between UT Southwestern faculty and independent physicians reflects our commitment to a common standard of care that is of the highest quality," Bruce Meyer, M.D., executive vice president for Health System Affairs at UT Southwestern, and Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, said in a statement."For patients, the network offers more choices and greater access to world-class medical services closer to their homes, ranging from primary care to the most complex specialty care. For physicians, the clinical integration achieved through the network enables them to have advanced analytics and comprehensive patient information at their fingertips to better manage care.”

ACO members will have access to tools for population risk stratification, predictive modeling, sophisticated disease registries, point-of-care management, and automated appointment reminders, as well as access to patient-centered medical home expertise, and practice-level quality and utilization performance reports with peer comparisons.

In a press release announcing the new ACO, UTSACN states that a unique feature of the affiliation optimizes the input from community and faculty physicians to create effective practice transformation.

Both organizations demonstrated success in improving measures of quality and reducing costs of care in the Medicare’s Shared Savings Plan in 2014, according to the press release.

“To be successful in the current environment of health care, physicians need to lean in to change. That is, embrace and implement clinical integration, population health management, and aligned reimbursement models," Jim Walton, D.O., MBA, and president and CEO of Genesis Physicians Group, said. Dr. Walton will serve as the president of UTSACN.

“Physicians who don't make changes now or in the near future may run the risk of becoming marginalized by the shifting payment system. Our ACO chose to align with UT Southwestern's robust, clinically integrated population health infrastructure to provide our members with the greatest opportunity for future success,” Walton said.

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