October 1, 1997

Why PVH, Fort Collins IPA need each other

FORT COLLINS — Reasons for Poudre Valley Hospital to sign a shared-risk agreement with Fort Collins IPA are compelling, especially in light of the Colorado Hospital Association˜s latest report, which placed PVH among the top five most-profitable hospitals in the state.
The three-year renewable contract places the hospital in a more cooperative, more secure — but potentially less profitable — situation.
Under the agreement, the hospital and the physicians will enter into joint capitated contracts with managed-care companies. Both will accept and manage a fixed amount of money to cover the cost of each patient˜s care, and therefore, both will have incentive to control those costs.
By strengthening its relationship with physicians and managed-care companies, the hospital gives itself some protection from other hospital groups considering a move into the region and the threat of losing patients to other area hospitals that have relationships with regional physicians.
Dr. Michael Paddack, regional medical director for PacifiCare of Colorado, said the company greets the news of a shared-risk agreement between the hospital and the IPA with enthusiasm.
"I like to see this because (PVH) has been taking a lot of hits on their costs for care," Paddack said. "Now they˜ve said they˜ capitate, and we˜ll see if they actually do."
The agreement was a necessary step for the hospital because the cost of care is notably higher in Northern Colorado, and managed-care companies are becoming more aggressive in attempts to lower costs, Paddack explained. If costs aren˜t controlled, he suggested, some companies may be faced with pulling out of Northern Colorado altogether or raising rates significantly.
The agreement also is good news for the physicians˜ group, which has desired such an agreement for years. Shared accountability with the hospital will make it easier for the doctors to provide cost-effective care and perhaps make them less inclined to send patients to North Colorado Medical Center in Greeley or McKee Medical Center in Loveland — hospitals that are about a year ahead of PVH in terms of managed-care contracting, Paddack said.
And finally, the partnership makes the managed-care companies happy. Paddack said a partnership with the hospital that complements an existing relationship with physicians is desirable, because it puts all three groups on a path toward the same goal: Appropriate care given in the appropriate setting for an appropriate price.
PVH and Fort Collins IPA will manage the administrative aspects of the agreement separately, and the agreement is not exclusive for either party. A similar agreement between PVH and United Physicians of Northern Colorado should be finalized soon, said PVH spokesman Ed Egger.Holistic health center opening
FORT COLLINS — When InnerHealth opens in mid-November, it will be the largest holistic health clinic in Northern Colorado. Thirteen physicians and certified practitioners from Fort Collins, Greeley and Windsor will offer comprehensive health care, including traditional and alternative methods of treatment.
The new center, located near Poudre Valley Hospital at 1017 Robertson St., will feature two family-practice physicians, and a nurse practitioner on one side and several body and energy work specialists on the other," said Dr. John Motl, one of the center˜s physicians, who specializes in medical acupuncture.
Biofeedback, massage therapy and general psychotherapy services will be available, as well as a retail store stocked with herbs, homeopathic medicines and resource materials.
"No one˜s really done this yet," Motl said. "For people who are interested in holistic or alternative health practices but don˜t know much about them, we˜ll do a mind, body, spirit assessment, review the patient˜s results with them and help them set goals."
Motl compares the program to the wellness programs that are gaining popularity, but says the patient will have access to many different health and medical traditions, and will have a coach to guide them through their program, do follow-up and help with motivation.Health-care summit slated for Oct.
GREELEY — The Business Council for HealthCare Competition will co-sponsor "Employers & the Health Care Headache" Oct. 10 at the Union Colony Civic Center Hensel Phelps Theater in Greeley.
The health-care summit will offer business people who purchase health care an overview of state and federal health-care legislation, an introduction to the language of managed care and the opportunity to participate in a panel discussion and dialogue with legislators and health-care experts.
The conference will be hosted by BCHC, a coalition of health-care purchasers formed to oversee a statewide educational campaign to oppose anti-competitive health-care legislation, and the Northern Colorado Legislative Alliance, the lobbying arm of the Greeley/Weld, Fort Collins and Loveland chambers of commerce. The conference is open to all members of the business community.
BCHC˜s goal is to protect managed care by supporting the competitive bidding process required of providers and lobbying against mandated benefits that drive up the cost of care, said Michael McArdle, director of governmental affairs for the Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry, under which BCHC operates.
Managed care isn˜t perfect," McArdle said. "Some problems exist, and it˜s constantly evolving, but the business community can be involved in solving the problems. What we˜re trying to do is give business people the tools they need to be part of the health-care debate."
The Greeley summit will run from 7:30 to 11:30 a.m. Registration is $25 for chamber members and $35 for nonmembers. Call (970) 352-3566 or (303) 866-9657.Helen Taylor can be reached at (970) 221-5400, (970) 356-1683, (800) 440-3506 or via fax at (970) 221-5432. Her e-mail address is htaylor@ncbr.com.

FORT COLLINS — Reasons for Poudre Valley Hospital to sign a shared-risk agreement with Fort Collins IPA are compelling, especially in light of the Colorado Hospital Association˜s latest report, which placed PVH among the top five most-profitable hospitals in the state.
The three-year renewable contract places the hospital in a more cooperative, more secure — but potentially less profitable — situation.
Under the agreement, the hospital and the physicians will enter into joint capitated contracts with managed-care companies. Both will accept and manage a fixed amount of money to cover the cost of each patient˜s care, and therefore, both will…

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