GuideWell and Organizacion Sanitas Internacional establish international joint venture to deliver high-quality and affordable health care to the Hispanic market in Florida and beyond

MIAMI, Sept. 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- GuideWell Mutual Holding Corporation (GuideWell) and Organizacion Sanitas Internacional (OSI) have established a strategic alliance to create a new company with the purpose of offering a culturally relevant health delivery model that provides affordable and quality health care to the important and growing Hispanic market.

This international strategic alliance brings two leading health care brands together. GuideWell is a health solutions organization that is focused on transforming health care. The GuideWell companies include: Florida Blue (Florida's Blue Cross and Blue Shield plan), GuideWell Health (a health care delivery company), GuideWell Connect (a health care consumer marketing company), and Diversified Service Options.

Organizacion Sanitas Internacional is a leading health care business group in Colombia, Venezuela, Peru and Brazil, through companies such as Colsanitas, Medisanitas, Sanitas Venezuela, Positiva Sanitas and Medisanitas Brasil. In addition, OSI owns a wide network of highly recognized clinics and hospitals focused on delivering high quality health care services, as well as educational institutions with a corporate social mission.

This unique health care model will be patient-centered, delivering high-quality and cost-effective health care through the establishment of local community medical centers. These centers will not only provide health care education and resources for area residents, but they will also provide medical services, such as primary care, select specialty care, walk-in care, lab, diagnostic and pharmacy services.

The medical centers' entire patient experience will be designed to meet the needs and preferences of those in the local markets, including cultural and linguistic aspects that are critical to resonating with a wide variety of Hispanic groups. Furthermore, there will be additional considerations for patient-engagement programs to address country of origin and assimilation differences amongst the targeted Hispanic cultures.   

These centers will initially serve communities in the Miami-Dade area, with potential future expansion planned for other regions of Florida as well as key Hispanic markets elsewhere in the United States.

Medical services at the centers will be offered to a broad range of consumers. While primarily targeting customers looking for primary care services as part of the Affordable Care Act's individual market, the medical centers will also be considered in-network options for Florida Blue's employer-group and Medicare health plans available in Miami-Dade.

"We are honored to partner with the Organizacion Sanitas Internacional on this first-of-its kind international health care collaboration," said Pat Geraghty, chairman and CEO of GuideWell. "The Hispanic market is one of the fastest growing segments in the country in general and in Florida specifically, and by collaborating with a leading Latin American health care company with deep experience in serving these communities, it will allow us to create health care solutions with lasting and meaningful impact for those we serve."

"This alliance responds to a need from many of our members in Latin America. We know that the Hispanic community will embrace this alliance between our companies, as we share the same values and commitment to delivering high quality health solutions for our members," said Joseba Grajales, majority shareholder of Organizacion Sanitas Internacional. "As part of our vision for expansion, we are honored to partner with GuideWell who is a leader in healthcare in the United States."

For Hispanic customers living in the United States and those in OSI markets, this alliance will offer access to an international network of high-quality health care medical centers that have been successfully implemented across Latin America.

About GuideWell Mutual Holding Corporation
GuideWell Mutual Holding Corporation is a not-for-profit mutual holding company that is the parent to a family of forward-thinking companies focused on transforming health care. The GuideWell companies include: Florida Blue (Florida's Blue Cross and Blue Shield plan), GuideWell Health (a health care delivery company), GuideWell Connect (a health care consumer marketing company), and Diversified Service Options (an administrative and claims processing company for state and federal health care programs).

About Organizacion Sanitas Internacional
Organizacion Sanitas Internacional is a leading health care business group in Colombia, Venezuela, Peru and Brazil, through companies such as Colsanitas, Medisanitas, Sanitas Venezuela, Plan Sanitas, Positiva Sanitas, Medisanitas Brasil and Vitallis. OSI owns a wide network of clinics and hospitals focused on health care services. In Colombia, this network includes highly recognized institutions such as: Clinica Reina Sofia, Clinica Universitaria Colombia, Clinica Sebastián de Belalcazar, Clinica de la Costa and Clinica Hispanoamérica, as well as Clinisanitas, which are specialized in outpatient care, pediatric, women's health, ophthalmology and diagnostic services, among others. In addition, OSI has educational institutions with a corporate social mission.   

SOURCE GuideWell

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