Dr. Richard Merkin, President and CEO, Heritage Provider Network, Sponsors Fountain Valley Community Healthcare Dialogue, Sixth in a Continuing Series on Healthcare Reform Addressing Issues for the Community

Sep 19, 2011, 15:50 ET from Heritage Provider Network, Inc.

MARINA DEL REY, Calif., Sept. 19, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Dr. Richard Merkin, President and CEO of Heritage Provider Network, sponsored the sixth in an ongoing Community Healthcare dialogue series discussing the impact of Healthcare Reform Legislation on the Community of Fountain Valley, California. The event was co-sponsored by the Fountain Valley Chamber of Commerce, Fountain Valley Regional Hospital, Affiliated Doctors of Orange County, Regal Medical Group and HPN.

Attendees learned how the new law already has made positive changes from panelists including Dr. John Ernsberger, Medical Director, ADOC Medical Group, member Heritage Provider Network Family, Mr. Gerald Kominski, Ph.D., Associate Director UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, and Mr. Shawn Dewers, Chief Business Development Officer, Fountain Valley Regional Hospital.

The Honorable Steve Nagel, Mayor of the City of Fountain Valley, moderated the panel.

"ADOC Medical Group and HPN are filling a need in the community for continued discussion on the important legislation. They are distinguishing themselves in our community and we are pleased to support their efforts," said the Mayor. "It is important to continue this type of community dialogue, as it stimulated a great deal of interest from those who attended and let me know they would like more opportunities for discussion with experts like those represented on the panel."

The event was particularly timely and helpful in light of the front page article in the business section of the Los Angeles Times (Sept. 14, 2011) revealing the increased numbers of uninsured in California combined with the rise in poverty levels. According to the article, 1 out of every 5 residents statewide lacks health insurance, some 19% of Californians representing 7.2 million people. During the discussion, Mayor Nagel pointed out 23% of residents in Orange County are underinsured, opening up the opportunity for questions on how doctors, hospitals and policy makers will respond when millions of California residents will be required to have health insurance as dictated by the new law.

"We at Heritage, ADOC believe that Healthcare Reform will provide much needed relief for the undeserved, said Dr. John Ernsberger, Medical Director at ADOC. "We are committed to providing the highest quality of care, access and affordability. We have a very successful 30 year professional track record of managed care and are ready to answer the needs of our communities."

"At Fountain Valley Regional Hospital, we align ourselves with managed physicians groups like ADOC and Regal so we can maximize the best possible care for patients while containing costs," said Shawn Dewers, Chief Business Development Officer, Fountain Valley Regional Hospital. "An integrated approach between physician groups and hospitals as part of healthcare reform will help improve the quality of care for all patients."

"The Affordable Care Act is an important step toward achieving universal access to health care in California and the United States. It will substantially reduce the number of uninsured by providing subsidies to low- and middle-income Californians to buy private health insurance through the California Health Benefit Exchange," said Gerald Kominski, Ph.D., Associate Director UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. "Those with the lowest income will be eligible to enroll in Medi-Cal. At the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, we estimate that up to 4 million currently uninsured Californians will gain health insurance coverage in 2014 as a result of health reform."

"Our ongoing Community Healthcare Dialogues give us the opportunity to exchange information and offer our communities experts who can answer their questions with clarity and direction," said Dr. Richard Merkin, President and CEO of Heritage Provider Network. "We are happy to continue to help the community understand the changes that are coming in our healthcare delivery system. We are the only medical group in the country providing these important dialogues and the feedback we receive helps us find better ways to provide quality, affordable healthcare."

About HPN:

Heritage Provider Network, Inc. (HPN) is on the cutting edge of the accountable care model of health care delivery: coordinated, patient-doctor centric, integrated health care systems that represent the future of health care in the United States. HPN develops programs and services that are responsive to the healthcare needs of today's patient. HPN designs its networks to offer patients a comprehensive range of medical care in convenient locations. It organizes and manages medical groups and independent practice associations, integrating with hospitals and ancillary care providers. This system represents a workable, successful business model that has been duplicated with medical groups, IPAs and medical facilities throughout California. HPN is dedicated to quality, affordable health care and putting patients' wellness first.(www.heritagehealthcare.com)

SOURCE Heritage Provider Network, Inc.