CAMDEN, N.J., April 10, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- In a highly innovative move, unprecedented in New Jersey, a health insurer and a hospital system -- AmeriHealth New Jersey and Cooper University Health Care -- announce today that Cooper will acquire a 20 percent interest in AmeriHealth New Jersey. This venture intends to transform health care in the state by increasing quality and lowering costs through a more highly coordinated care model.
Together, Cooper and AmeriHealth New Jersey will develop and offer an expanded suite of health plans and an accountable care model for New Jersey residents. These health plans will include insured, self-insured, and Medicare products, and will provide employers and consumers with new options that focus on affordability while offering access to world-class care from Cooper's more than 500 employed physicians in South Jersey and a network of over 100 outpatient offices.
"We are proud that AmeriHealth New Jersey and Cooper are transforming health care by cultivating this innovative partnership with physicians and hospitals in order to manage medical costs, develop low-cost, high-quality products, and enhance the patient experience," said Daniel J. Hilferty, president and CEO, Independence Blue Cross, the corporate parent of AmeriHealth New Jersey. "This collaboration helps to break down the traditional barriers associated with health care by having two organizations work together as one to build an accountable care model -- and that is what makes it so exciting."
In order to provide extensive case management, help patients navigate the health care system, and ensure better access to and optimal coordination of care, Cooper will also incorporate the patient-centered medical home model in its primary care practices. The patient-centered model is specifically designed to enhance communication with patients and among providers and give patients easier access to physicians.
Working together toward accountability in care
"There has never been a more pivotal time in the health care industry, and we are pleased to be playing a leadership role in helping transform the delivery of care for the residents of New Jersey," said Judith L. Roman, president and CEO of AmeriHealth New Jersey. "Together with Cooper we are driving joint accountability in delivering higher quality healthcare and lowering its cost for New Jersey residents. In addition, this partnership further strengthens our ability to enable the people of New Jersey to improve their health and well-being, which is our ultimate goal."
"Under this new partnership with AmeriHealth New Jersey, Cooper's network of advanced medical specialists and primary care physicians will provide coordinated patient care never seen before in our region," said George E. Norcross, III, chairman of the board at Cooper. "As an academic medical center with access to more than 500 physicians, patients will have better, more personalized care, utilizing the latest and most technologically advanced treatment options available."
Committed to delivering quality care
AmeriHealth New Jersey and Cooper University Health Care serve the residents of New Jersey and are dedicated to helping individuals improve their overall health and wellness and ensuring they receive affordable, high-quality health care, as demonstrated by the comprehensive services and innovative initiatives they offer.
AmeriHealth New Jersey is one of five plans in New Jersey participating in the CMS national comprehensive care initiative, which is geared toward developing a long-term primary care support plan in New Jersey. The pilot's multi-payer approach offers an effective incentive for physicians to alter their model of care and will allow for greater collaboration and data aggregation.
Cooper University Health Care recently embarked on an Employee Centered Medical Home model to create a comprehensive, hands-on approach for their 9,100 covered employees. This pilot program introduces the medical home concept, providing close management of those employees who have chronic conditions and often have difficulty managing their care. It offers more cost efficient coordinated care with the goal of keeping Cooper employees healthier over time and reducing long term medical costs.
"I have a complicated medical history," says Cooper employee, Ann Buchanan, who is a member of the Employee Centered Medical Home. "My doctor communicates with me and also talks with all of the specialists involved in my care on a regular basis. This is the best outpatient care you can possibly receive. It is keeping me out of the hospital."
About AmeriHealth New Jersey
AmeriHealth HMO, Inc. and AmeriHealth Insurance Company of New Jersey (collectively, AmeriHealth New Jersey) provide health insurance coverage to employers and individuals throughout New Jersey. The company has the largest provider network in New Jersey*, and that network includes access to hospitals and doctors across the nation. The company is also committed to offering value-added insurance solutions for customers through its innovative wellness and incentive programs and benefits designs.
The company's managed care plan, AmeriHealth HMO, Inc. is accredited by National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA).
AmeriHealth New Jersey and its affiliates are a growing group of insurance and health companies whose product portfolios include health insurance, workers' compensation, property and casualty insurance, and management services. AmeriHealth New Jersey headquarters are located in Cranbury, NJ. For more information on AmeriHealth New Jersey, visit www.amerihealthnj.com.
* Based on analysis done through an independent source.
About Cooper University Health Care
Cooper University Health Care is one of the largest health systems in Southern New Jersey with over 100 outpatient offices and its flagship, Cooper University Hospital located in Camden, NJ. It is the premier university hospital serving South Jersey and the Delaware Valley. Cooper has reaffirmed its role as a leader in medical education and research with the opening of Cooper Medical School of Rowan University in 2012, the first four-year allopathic medical school in South Jersey. Cooper is renowned for signature programs in cardiology, cancer, critical care, pediatrics, trauma, orthopaedics and neurosciences. Cooper is also home to the only state designated Children's Hospital in South Jersey--The Children's Regional Hospital at Cooper. Over the last seven years, Cooper has transformed its Camden City neighborhood into the Cooper Health Sciences Campus. In fall 2013, The Cooper Cancer Institute, a free standing center for comprehensive cancer care, will open on the Health Sciences Campus. Cooper also continues its regional expansion with the opening of new and expanded facilities throughout Camden, Burlington and Gloucester Counties.
SOURCE AmeriHealth New Jersey