Sutter Health|Aetna adds Stanford Health Care to network

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The joint venture between provider and payer, which launched last year, has grown to about 50 plan sponsors across 15 counties.

Sutter Health|Aetna has added Stanford Health Care to its network of providers.

Sutter Health|Aetna is the joint venture launched last year between the Sacramento, California-based health system and the national insurer. It offers self-insured preferred provider organization health plans to businesses in the Northern California area.

It has grown to about 50 plan sponsors across 15 counties.


This represents another expanded partnership between a provider and payer, though this is in the commercial space.

Other recent partnerships, such as the one announced between Duke Health and Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, have capitalized on the Medicare Advantage market.

Stanford Health Care recently launched a Medicare Advantage plan with Lumeris called the Stanford Health Care Advantage, in northern California.

The partnerships allow providers and insurers to expand their reach and get access to population health data to lower costs and improve outcomes.
The addition of Stanford Health Care gives Sutter Health|Aetna’s network members in Northern California access to the network’s more than 1,500 specialists and nearly 200 primary care physicians throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.


With the addition of Stanford Health Care, the Sutter Health|Aetna joint venture features two nationally recognized healthcare systems and access to a Northern California network that includes 33 hospitals, more than 1,700 primary care physicians, more than 9,400 specialists, 74 urgent care locations and 25 walk-in clinics.


“The inclusion of Stanford Health Care, with its physicians from across Stanford Medicine, to our high-quality network will not only expand the provider network for our plan sponsors and members, but also provide access to another highly ranked health care system,” said Steve Wigginton, CEO of Sutter Health|Aetna. “This addition will help us in our goal to create a unique offering for Northern California employers and their employees centered around a superior consumer experience and market-leading value.”



50 largest US medical group parents

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Oakland, Calif.-based Permanente Medical Groups ranked No. 1 in the nation’s 50 largest medical group parents, with over three times the number of unique physicians as the second ranked Veterans Health Administration, according to an annual report published by IQVIA.

The report uses data from OneKey, a database from IQVIA that includes nine million U.S. healthcare professionals and 680,000 organizations.

The report ranked these parent companies by total physician affiliations, unique physicians and medical group count. Total physician affiliations are defined as the number of physician bridges between providers and sites, unique physicians are defined as the number of unique physicians affiliated to an integrated delivery network and medical group count is defined as the number of physicians at the IDN’s outpatient center(s), which may be a single specialty or multispecialty business. Imaging centers and surgery centers are not included in this report.

Here are the 50 largest U.S. medical group parents, ranked according to total physician affiliations, unique physicians and medical group count.

No. 1 — Permanente Medical Groups (Oakland, Calif.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 19,179
  • Unique physicians: 14,757
  • Medical group count: 578

No. 2 — Veterans Health Administration (Washington, D.C.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 4,909
  • Unique physicians: 4,798
  • Medical group count: 690

No. 3 — Mayo Clinic (Rochester, Minn.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 5,137
  • Unique physicians: 4,733
  • Medical group count: 128

No. 4 — Ascension Health (St. Louis)

  • Total physician affiliations: 5,035
  • Unique physicians: 4,218
  • Medical group count: 1,136

No. 5 — UC Health (Oakland, Calif.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 4,797
  • Unique physicians: 4,124
  • Medical group count: 397

No. 6 — Fresenius Medical Care Holdings (Waltham, Mass.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 5,875
  • Unique physicians: 3,229
  • Medical group count: 2,479

No. 7 — Providence Saint Joseph Health (Renton, Wash.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 3,507
  • Unique physicians: 3,054
  • Medical group count: 573

No. 8 — DaVita (Denver)

  • Total physician affiliations: 3,676
  • Unique physicians: 2,737
  • Medical group count: 2,813

No. 9 — Trinity Health (Livonia, Mich.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 2,864
  • Unique physicians: 2,551
  • Medical group count: 607

No. 10 — Catholic Health Initiatives (Englewood, Colo.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 2,961
  • Unique physicians: 2,473
  • Medical group count: 766

No. 11 — Sutter Health (Sacramento, Calif.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 3,131
  • Unique physicians: 2,468
  • Medical group count: 436

No. 12 — HCA Healthcare (Nashville, Tenn.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 2,838
  • Unique physicians: 2,457
  • Medical group count: 641

No. 13 — Partners HealthCare System (Boston)

  • Total physician affiliations: 2,384
  • Unique physicians: 2,178
  • Medical group count: 218

No. 14 — UPMC (Pittsburgh)*

  • Total physician affiliations: 2,955
  • Unique physicians: 2,163
  • Medical group count: 642

No. 15 — Carolinas HealthCare System — now Atrium Health (Charlotte, N.C.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 2,235
  • Unique physicians: 1,885
  • Medical group count: 468

No. 16 — Cleveland Clinic

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,873
  • Unique physicians: 1,656
  • Medical group count: 195

No. 17 — Aurora Health Care (Milwaukee)

  • Total physician affiliations: 2,245
  • Unique physicians: 1,623
  • Medical group count: 258

No. 18 — Mercy Health (Chesterfield, Mo.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,840
  • Unique physicians: 1,570
  • Medical group count: 515

No. 19 —New York Presbyterian Healthcare System (New York City)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,617
  • Unique physicians: 1,506
  • Medical group count: 168

No. 20 — NYU Langone Health (New York City)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,743
  • Unique physicians: 1,500
  • Medical group count: 221

No. 21 — Indiana University Health (Indianapolis)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,671
  • Unique physicians: 1,462
  • Medical group count: 244

No. 22 — SSM Health (Saint Louis)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,824
  • Unique physicians: 1,455
  • Medical group count: 274

No. 23 — Penn Medicine (Philadelphia)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,746
  • Unique physicians: 1,443
  • Medical group count: 210

No. 24 — Advocate Health Care (Downers Grove, Ill.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,777
  • Unique physicians: 1,398
  • Medical group count: 284

No. 25 — Baylor Scott & White Health (Dallas)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,596
  • Unique physicians: 1,362
  • Medical group count: 290

No. 26 — Dignity Health (San Francisco)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,519
  • Unique physicians: 1,342
  • Medical group count: 396

No. 27 — Northwell Health (New Hyde Park, N.Y.)*

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,528
  • Unique physicians: 1,337
  • Medical group count: 308

No. 28 — Mount Sinai Health System (New York City)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,522
  • Unique physicians: 1,326
  • Medical group count: 215

No. 29 — Community Health Systems (Franklin, Tenn.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,497
  • Unique physicians: 1,312
  • Medical group count: 586

No. 30 — Yale New Haven (Conn.) Health System

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,516
  • Unique physicians: 1,311
  • Medical group count: 202

No. 31 — Emory Healthcare (Atlanta)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,523
  • Unique physicians: 1,282
  • Medical group count: 119

No. 32 — Stanford (Calif.) Health Care

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,403
  • Unique physicians: 1,254
  • Medical group count: 110

No. 33 — HealthPartners (Minneapolis)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,508
  • Unique physicians: 1,254
  • Medical group count: 117

No. 34 — Johns Hopkins Health System (Baltimore)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,515
  • Unique physicians: 1,251
  • Medical group count: 166

No. 35 — Vanderbilt University Medical Center (Nashville, Tenn.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,655
  • Unique physicians: 1,248
  • Medical group count: 109

No. 36 — Duke University Health System (Durham, N.C.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,549
  • Unique physicians: 1,229
  • Medical group count: 231

No. 37 — Intermountain Healthcare (Salt Lake City)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,452
  • Unique physicians: 1,197
  • Medical group count: 241

No. 38 — Jefferson Health (Radnor, Pa.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,372
  • Unique physicians: 1,153
  • Medical group count: 173

No. 39 — UW Medicine (Seattle)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,459
  • Unique physicians: 1,093
  • Medical group count: 178

No. 40 — Northwestern Medicine (Chicago)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,370
  • Unique physicians: 1,083
  • Medical group count: 135

No. 41 — Fairview Health Services (Minneapolis)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,291
  • Unique physicians: 1,070
  • Medical group count: 139

No. 42 — Novant Health (Winston-Salem, N.C.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,324
  • Unique physicians: 1,063
  • Medical group count: 305

No. 43 — Tenet Healthcare (Dallas)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,161
  • Unique physicians: 1,052
  • Medical group count: 347

No. 44 — Banner Health (Phoenix)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,303
  • Unique physicians: 1,043
  • Medical group count: 239

No. 45 — University of Michigan Health System (Ann Arbor)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,285
  • Unique physicians: 1,039
  • Medical group count: 84

No. 46 — Adventist Health System (Altamonte Springs, Fla.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,180
  • Unique physicians: 1,033
  • Medical group count: 312

No. 47 — UNC Health Care System (Chapel Hill, N.C.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,162
  • Unique physicians: 1,013
  • Medical group count: 211

No. 48 — PeaceHealth (Vancouver, Wash.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,137
  • Unique physicians: 1,006
  • Medical group count: 165

No. 49 — Allina Health System (Minneapolis)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,259
  • Unique physicians: 999
  • Medical group count: 120

No. 50 — Sanford Health (Sioux Falls, S.D.)

  • Total physician affiliations: 1,212
  • Unique physicians: 964
  • Medical group count: 198

To download IQVIA’s full report, click here.

Collaboration, Big Data Help Phoenix Children’s Focus on Value-Based Care

The exterior of Phoenix Children's Hospital in Arizona

Phoenix Children’s collaborative approach to value-based care relies on community input, big data analytics, and a physician-driven quality measurement program.

Mergers, acquisitions, and new partnerships can be a scary prospect for healthcare organizations, no matter which side of the negotiating table they are occupying.

In addition to potential cultural changes, staffing adjustments, and new workflows to adopt, organizations joining forces in the era of value-based care often have to adopt to new electronic health record systems and accept different strategies for measuring their quality, productivity, and outcomes.

While a successful union can rescue revenue cycles, and bring renewed vitality to flagging providers, healthcare organizations must carefully navigate the delicate acquisition process to ensure that new members of the team have the skills and tools required to reach their full potential.

At Phoenix Children’s, one of the largest pediatric health systems in the country, a desire to offer comprehensive care to the community has led to a firm reliance on big data analytics to gather actionable financial and clinical insights from a rapidly growing provider network.

Over the last three years, Phoenix Children’s has brought more than 100 independent practices into the fold, says Chad Johnson, Senior Vice President and Executive Director of the Phoenix Children’s Care Network – and full data transparency is a fundamental requirement for each and every new member of the team.

The ability to use big data analytics to measure productivity, quality, and financial success within a comprehensive network of care will be vital for Phoenix Children’s as it continues an ambitious move into value-based reimbursements.

“During 2017, we’re moving around 100,000 lives into fully risk-based models,” Johnson explained to  “We’re doing this because we believe that the way to truly influence outcomes is to own the medical management of our populations.  Hospitals will need to have a much larger footprint – a larger, integrated network – that includes independent primary care and specialty groups under one umbrella.”

“We want to move aggressively down this path because we feel that unless you’re willing to take that step, you’re never going to be able to really bend that cost curve,” he added. “We’re confident that we can step up to the plate and succeed in a risk-based environment with the strategies we’re cultivating.”

Number one on the list of challenges as the health network shoulders more financial risk is how to accurately and consistently measure quality across so many disparate locations and provider types.

“We’ve had to integrate data from these practices, which are all using a variety of EHRs, and then figure out how to consume that data and present it so that it can be used for optimizing care and to verify quality improvements across the network,” Johnson said.

“We use this data to target interventions, and to improve the management of our populations, our performance on quality metrics, our utilization, and total cost of care.  That data becomes the number one essential driver of many of the decisions that we’re going to make within our pediatric health enterprise.”

San Francisco Bay Area: Major Players Drive Regional Network Development

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Henry Schein soars on healthcare consolidation, integrated delivery networks as hospital execs seek supply chain help

Company has seen more supply chain executives at the hospital level get involved with purchasing decisions.