Tags: coordinated care , affordability

Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley has filed an agreement in Suffolk Superior Court that would allow us to move forward on partnerships with South Shore Hospital, Hallmark Health and Harbor Medical Associates. Our vision offers substantive benefits for patients in these communities.

At Partners HealthCare, we want to expand access to affordable, coordinated health care, closer to the homes of our patients and their families. The agreement we’ve reached with the Attorney General helps us achieve this vision:

  • Coordinated: Creating strong clinical and financial ties between primary care physicians, community hospitals and our system is key to coordinating services across the continuum of care for our patients, which is why we’ve pursued these new affiliations.
  • Affordable: Caring for entire populations of patients further allows us to invest in the services they need to make the best decisions about their care. We’re doing this through population health management, a framework that helps us adhere to state and federal health care reforms.
  • Closer: We made a commitment to work with South Shore Hospital, Hallmark Health and Harbor Medical Associates to deliver the best possible care to patients and their families in their communities.

The Attorney General is tasked with looking out for consumers’ best interest, and we have worked with the Attorney General to agree upon ways to do so. The agreement we reached includes a price cap at the rate of inflation, puts restrictions in place on how different parts of our system will contract with insurers, and limits the growth of our physician and hospital network for the next decade. If approved by the court, Partners will be the most regulated health care provider in the Commonwealth, with a monitor in place providing oversight for 10 years.

In the last few days, a group of four providers have raised concerns about the agreement. Yet, some of these providers have pursued the same strategies, merging with smaller local hospitals to increase the size of their networks. We believe that this group is more concerned with their own private interests than any interest of the consumer. Throughout our discussions with the Attorney General, Partners has adhered to Massachusetts health care law by following an open process, including multiple public hearings with multiple state agencies and regular coverage by the media.

Partners, South Shore Hospital, Hallmark Health, Harbor Medical Associates and many public voices in the communities we serve are all in agreement: Moving forward with our partnership is in the best interest of patients throughout Eastern Massachusetts.