CHOC Children's and St. Joseph Hoag Health Form an Accountable Care Organization

Categories: Press Room

ORANGE COUNTY, Calif. – August 4, 2014 – St. Joseph Hoag Health and CHOC Children’s announced this morning that they will form an accountable care organization (ACO), bringing together outstanding health care providers throughout Orange County. With this announcement, CHOC and St. Joseph Hoag Health will ensure integrated health care delivery, serving all generations of Orange County residents with a full range of coordinated health care services.

In forming an ACO, St. Joseph Hoag Health and CHOC share in the financial and medical responsibility for managing and providing care to patients. The goals are to improve quality of patient care, enhance the patient experience and create efficiencies through collectively attending to patients’ needs and avoiding unnecessary treatments.

The St. Joseph Hoag Health ACO includes eight hospitals (including CHOC Children’s in Orange and CHOC Children’s at Mission) and nine medical groups and affiliated physician networks, along with numerous urgent care centers, clinics and other outpatient services across Orange County. CHOC will remain independent and, to ensure continued access for those needing care, will continue to care for children outside the St. Joseph Hoag Health network.

“We are thrilled that St. Joseph Hoag Health and CHOC will now be able to work more closely in addressing the health care needs of our area’s families,” said Dr. Richard Afable, president and CEO of St. Joseph Hoag Health. “Together, we will ensure greater access and efficiency, collaborate on best practices, find solutions to many of our area’s greatest health care needs and focus on preventive services to keep our young patients healthy. We have always said that today’s health care challenges call for the brightest minds and biggest hearts, and we have truly found these qualities in the physicians and staff members of CHOC.”

“CHOC, St. Joseph Health and Hoag have a long history of working together for the health and well-being of Orange County,” said Kimberly Chavalas Cripe, president and CEO of CHOC Children’s. “This latest collaboration aligns our outstanding clinical teams to further serve a common vision of better, more accessible care for local families. We are excited about the possibilities of this coordinated, like-minded approach and look forward to our collective efforts.”

“We will provide comprehensive pediatric health care across the continuum,” says Dr. Connie Bartlett, vice president of St. Jude and St. Joseph Heritage Medical Group and a practicing pediatrician. “While an accountable care organization traditionally focuses on those with HMO insurance, we see this new partnership as an opportunity to clinically integrate and deliver better care for all our patients. We want our young patients to receive the right care at the right time, while avoiding unnecessary duplication of services and working toward excellent outcomes. Ultimately, all families in our care will know they have an outstanding team of doctors and nurses behind them."

Among initial activities of the St. Joseph Hoag Health and CHOC ACO are:

- Focusing on preventive health and wellness programs for local families and children

- Increasing access to health care services for all families and children

- Achieving better clinical outcomes and improving the overall patient experience at all network hospitals, medical offices and clinics

- Addressing critical pediatric and adolescent behavioral health issues

- Extending care beyond the acute hospital setting, including finding new ways to manage chronic disease on an outpatient basis

- Addressing the cost challenge of providing and receiving quality services, working with local employers and health plans to offer new services

- Developing more sites throughout Orange County that focus on wellness and preventive services

About St. Joseph Hoag Health

St. Joseph Hoag Health is an historic alliance for Orange County, laying the foundation for sweeping changes in the delivery and accessibility of high quality health care. Combined, St. Joseph Hoag Health has earned some of the highest honors for medical care, including Magnet designation for its hospitals (the highest honor bestowed to hospitals for nursing excellence), “best of” listings in US News & World Report and Best of Orange County (Orange County Register) status. Drawing upon the strengths of two renowned health care organizations, St. Joseph Hoag Health focuses on meeting the big challenges of health care today, including expanding access, improving wellness and preventive services, ensuring quality and developing more efficient methods in the delivery of care. The new network includes six flagship hospitals (Hoag Newport Beach, Hoag Irvine, Mission Hospital Mission Viejo, Mission Hospital Laguna Beach, St. Joseph Hospital Orange and St. Jude Medical Center), eight medical groups and physician networks (Hoag Affiliated Physicians, Hoag Medical Group, Mission Heritage Medical Group, Mission Hospital Affiliated Physicians, St. Joseph Hospital Affiliated Physicians, St. Joseph Heritage Medical Group, St. Jude Affiliated Physicians and St. Jude Heritage Medical Group) and numerous outpatient and urgent care facilities in Orange County.

About CHOC Children’s

Named one of the best children’s hospitals by U.S. News & World Report (2014-2015) and a 2013 Leapfrog Top Hospital for the highest quality care, Children’s Hospital of Orange County (CHOC Children's) is exclusively committed to the health and well-being of children through clinical expertise, advocacy, outreach, education and research that brings advanced treatment to pediatric patients. CHOC’s regional health care network includes two state-of-the-art hospitals in Orange and Mission Viejo, many primary and specialty care clinics, a pediatric residency program with the UC Irvine School of Medicine, and four clinical centers of excellence -the CHOC Children’s Heart, Neuroscience, Orthopaedic and Hyundai Cancer Institutes. CHOC earned the Gold Level CAPE Award from the California Council of Excellence, the only children’s hospital in California to ever earn this distinction, and was awarded Magnet designation, the highest honor bestowed to hospitals for nursing excellence. Recognized for extraordinary commitment to high-quality critical care standards, CHOC’s Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) is the first in the United States to earn the Beacon Award for Pediatric Critical Care Excellence.