• Premera and Swedish Announce Innovative Partnership

    Community Medical Home Offers Focus on Improved Health

    SEATTLE, WA – (July 23, 2009) – Premera Blue Cross and Swedish are pleased to announce Premera’s partnership with the non-profit health system’s new, innovative Community Health Medical Home Clinic at Swedish/Ballard.

    The goal of the Community Health Medical Home Clinic is to expand access to primary care; offering a model that emphasizes a holistic approach, including care coordination, expanded interactions with medical staff, and delivery of more effective care. Premera is working actively with a number of its employer groups to make this program available to interested individual members.

    “We’re thrilled with this collaboration with Swedish,” said Rich Maturi, Premera’s senior vice president for Health Care Delivery Systems. “We know better and more complete primary care is essential for improving patient health and in controlling rising health-care costs. Swedish’s Community Health Medical Home Clinic is a great program to help put these ideas into practice.”

    Premera members electing to receive their primary care at Swedish’s Community Health Medical Home Clinic will receive unlimited access to physician teams to provide not only preventive care, but also wellness services, chronic disease management, and other health services. Participating members will have their co-pays for visits to the Ballard Campus Clinic waived by Swedish.

    “Premera has been a wonderful partner in our medical home pilot project. They formed a dedicated, innovative team that has worked tirelessly and carefully to help us launch our program,” said Jay Fathi, M.D., medical director for Primary Care and Community Health at Swedish. “Premera is showing strong leadership from the commercial insurance sector in helping to create new models of both primary care delivery and reimbursement to improve our health-care system.”

    Premera and Swedish have agreed on an innovative model of reimbursement for care provided at the Clinic. Rather than simply paying for volume of services as is often the case in the health-care system today, the new payment structure will emphasize quality of care and healthy patient outcomes – including incentives for Swedish in delivering this quality care to Premera’s participating members. This innovative partnership is an extension of Premera’s existing collaboration with Swedish.

    “Premera is committed to value-based health-care programs, providing improved outcomes for patients while changing the incentives for medical professionals to support that emphasis on quality of care,” said Maturi. “We’re thrilled to have Swedish be our first partner in what will be a long-term commitment to improving health and helping control health-care costs.”

    For more information on the Swedish Community Health Medical Home, please visit: http://www.swedish.org/body.cfm?id=2907 

    About Premera Blue Cross

    Our mission is to provide peace of mind to our members about their healthcare coverage. We provide health insurance and related services to 1.5 million people in Washington and Alaska. Premera Blue Cross has operated in Washington since 1933, and Alaska since 1952. Premera Blue Cross is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Premera Blue Cross is a member of a family of companies based in Mountlake Terrace, Washington, that provide health, life, vision, dental, stop-loss, disability, and other related products and services. 

    About Swedish

    Swedish is the largest, most comprehensive, nonprofit health provider in the Greater Seattle area. It is comprised of three hospital campuses (First Hill, Cherry Hill and Ballard), a freestanding emergency room and specialty center in Issaquah, Swedish Home Care Services, and the Swedish Physician Division, which is a network of about 40 primary- and specialty-care clinics located throughout the Puget Sound region. 

    In addition to general medical and surgical care, Swedish is known as a regional referral center, providing specialized treatment in areas such as neuroscience, cardiovascular care, cancer care, orthopedics, high-risk obstetrics, organ transplantation and clinical research. For more information, visit www.swedish.org