Value-based care requires trading competition for collaboration

Guest post by Barry Ronan, president and CEO of Western Maryland Health System in Cumberland, Maryland

Last week, I read the results of a survey on value-based care delivery that got my attention. The survey stated that approximately 80 percent of U.S. hospitals are, at best, evolving toward value-based care delivery with only 3 percent fully engaged in such care delivery.

In 2010, Maryland began a value-based care delivery demonstration project that then encompassed 10 hospitals in the state, including the Western Maryland Health System (WMHS).

By January 2014, all Maryland hospitals were included in the new care delivery model. For the last five years, WMHS has been caring for patients in the most appropriate setting whether it's acute, pre-acute or post-acute care.

Under this care delivery model, we had to reach out to our competitors and begin collaborating with each of them. For example, when we contacted an urgent care provider in our community, its response was, "we don't partner with hospitals; we compete with them." But after explaining that our care delivery model was now based on value, not volume and that they could help keep our patients out of our emergency department, they got it.

>> Read the full commentary at Hospital Impact