CHARLOTTE, N.C., June 30, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A group of physician practices announced today the formation of Carolinas Physician Alliance, a clinically integrated network (CIN) of nearly 2,300 physicians that will operate in collaboration with Carolinas HealthCare System.
This network will promote the use of consistent standards for care delivery, quality tracking and reporting, information sharing and physician collaboration. It will initially operate in 12 contiguous counties around the metro Charlotte area, including Mecklenburg, Cabarrus, Union, Anson, Stanly, Rowan, Lincoln, Gaston, Cleveland, Iredell, York (SC) and Lancaster (SC) counties.
Charter members of the alliance include physicians from Charlotte Radiology, Carolina Neurosurgery & Spine Associates, Metrolina Nephrology, Northeast Digestive Health Center, OrthoCarolina, Southeast Anesthesiology Consultants, Surgical Specialists of Charlotte, and Emergency Medicine Physicians, as well as physicians from Carolinas HealthCare System. Additional groups are expected to join over the next several months.
Carolinas Physician Alliance will be physician-led with the board being comprised of equal representation from independent and system physicians. The board will oversee the hiring of Carolinas Physician Alliance staff including the CEO, COO, medical director and other staff, as well as development of contracts and clinical programs. Mark Aldous, MD, a physician with the Northeast Digestive Health Center, was selected as chair of the alliance's board.
"By developing a network of like-minded providers that all share the philosophy around putting the quality of care and needs of patients first, we are building a broad network of healthcare professionals that not only provides excellent care to individuals, but can also impact large, diverse populations," Aldous said. "The end result is increased access to quality care, improved outcomes for patients, and overall lower healthcare costs for patients and payers."
Over the past year, Carolinas HealthCare System hosted design and development work with physicians in the community to determine the qualities of a CIN that would best fit the needs of the region. The formation of a CIN was announced in February after physician leaders spent more than 700 hours developing Carolinas Physician Alliance.
Initial focus areas of the Carolinas Physician Alliance will include improving clinical efficiencies, avoiding unnecessary treatments and unplanned readmissions, cost-of-care reductions, and chronic disease management such as diabetes, asthma and preventative screenings.
CINs can help enhance the quality of care provided to patients by enabling a community of physicians to identify and adopt 'best-practice' clinical protocols for various diseases, monitor compliance with the adopted protocols to help ensure patients get the best care, collaborate with each other, and develop programs that encourage efforts to improve quality and efficiency.
"The benefits of clinically integrated networks are well established for both physicians and patients, so we are excited that this entity is being established in collaboration with physicians across the region to maximize the benefits for as many people as possible," said James Hunter MD, Carolinas Physician Alliance board member and chief medical officer for Carolinas HealthCare System. "At Carolinas HealthCare System, we have been committed to delivering exceptional, high-quality care and creating value for our patients for some time and the creation of Carolinas Physician Alliance is a natural next step in that journey."