Our ACO initiative is enabled by several technologies working together in new ways. We chose Tribridge because it has a vision for coordinating care that aligns with ours, as well as deep experience with Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
When Virtua, South Jersey's largest health system launched its VirtuaCare ACO in 2013, it became one of the first organizations in its region to participate as an Accountable Care Organizations (ACO) by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). For Virtua, the new VirtuaCare ACO reinforces its broader mission of helping its patients “be well, get well and stay well” by creating care plans that are tailored specifically to them. Care goes beyond treating patients only when they are ill and, instead, follows a new approach that aligns an entire team, from office staff to physicians and nurses, in a coordinated fashion.
For Virtua, launching the new ACO required deployment of a new infrastructure and new tools that would enable care managers to meet the needs of its Medicare population. For Al Campanella, the Virtua executive sponsoring the ACO launch, the goal was to have a system that creates alerts after “listening to the data to see what's happening.” If, for example, a patient is admitted to the emergency room after a fall at home, the system would generate an alert prompting the care manager to engage the patient's primary care physician for necessary care after the patient returned home. The system should also be capable of triggering many other alerts, including the need for preventative care, prescribed follow-up care, and annual wellness visits.
To meet the challenging requirements of an ACO and, more importantly, effectively meet the needs of its patient population, Virtua selected a proven platform, Microsoft Dynamics CRM. To tailor the platform to its precise requirements, Virtua also turned to Tribridge, a technology services firm that specializes in integrating Microsoft Dynamics software. Tribridge tailored the software to meet the numerous administrative functions that an ACO must perform, including publication of alerts, tracking of patient enrollment, creating patient assignments for care managers, and customizing patient registries.
- VirtuaCare ACO launched in January 2013 and now supports more than 150,000 patients.
- The program shows favorable trends for meeting its clinical goals.
- New goals are already being met, including appropriate care for chronic conditions and greater patient engagement.