John Muir Health's Physician Network Wins Top Honors for Quality and Patient Satisfaction from the Integrated Healthcare Association

WALNUT CREEK, Calif., Sept. 25, 2013 – John Muir Health’s non-profit medical group, the John Muir Physician Network, was named a "Top Performer" and "Most Improved" by the Integrated Healthcare Association (IHA) at its annual meeting. The awards place the Physician Network among the top medical groups in California for quality of care, patient satisfaction and meaningful use of health information technology.

“The recognition by IHA is a tribute to the highly-skilled physicians and staff who deliver outstanding care and service to our patients,” said Lee Huskins, president and CAO of John Muir Health’s Physician Network. “Patients should feel confident that they are receiving the best possible care when they see a physician associated with John Muir Health.”

The 2012 awards are based on the IHA's statewide Pay for Performance (P4P) program measures, which, in addition to meaningful use of health IT and patient experience, measure clinical quality in areas such as heart disease, diabetes and preventive medicine. The most improved award recognizes the efforts of John Muir Health's Physician Network to reach top performer status.

"This is a significant achievement, ” says Dolores Yanagihara, Vice President of Performance Measurement & Analytics at IHA, “because it is difficult to keep improving when you are already performing at a high level. ”

“These awards validate our efforts across John Muir Health to manage chronic diseases, increase the number of patients receiving preventive screenings, reduce hospital admissions, reduce lengths of stay for hospitalized patients and lower our total cost of care,” said Mike Kern, M.D., senior vice president and medical director of John Muir Health's Physician Network. “Ultimately, it is our patients who benefit most from these efforts as we partner with them to maintain or improve their health.”

Beginning in 2013, the P4P program is transitioning to a more value-based measurement, which holds organizations responsible for both the quality and cost of care delivered to patients. The change is aligned with the national movement towards Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) and other value based purchasing approaches. John Muir Health is currently part of two ACOs with Medicare and Blue Shield and provides Medical Home services at more than 70 physician practices. These services focus on helping patients with chronic diseases better manage their condition and avoid unnecessary trips to the Emergency Room and hospital stays.

“We are well positioned for and are already adapting to the changing health care environment and the increasing emphasis on population health, ” said Huskins. “We will continue to work to provide high quality care and an excellent patient experience at an affordable cost, which is the value that patients are looking for from health care providers. ”

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