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Lifespan and Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island Collaborate on State’s Largest Accountable Care Model to Improve Patient Care and Reduce Costs


• Three-year program will be most significant risk-sharing agreement in Rhode Island

Lifespan and Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) have announced an innovative collaboration that will transform the way health care is delivered to over 35,000 patients and includes more than 110 primary care providers. The three-year program is the largest risk-sharing agreement in Rhode Island, and includes Medicare Advantage and commercially insured patients.

This initiative is the first step in moving away from the traditional fee-for-service model and demonstrates how health systems, insurers and providers are finding new ways to work together to better coordinate care, improve quality and contain health care costs.

Throughout the partnership, BCBSRI and Lifespan will jointly invest in programs that support care transformation by coordinating all aspects of a patient’s care – from office visits to hospitalizations. In addition, the new payment model will reward physicians for meeting quality performance and outcome goals.  

“This collaboration with Lifespan will provide a physician-led, patient-centered, team-based approach for our members. Our goal is for patients to receive the care they need and to realize better health outcomes at a lower cost,” said Peter Andruszkiewicz, president and CEO for BCBSRI. “This new agreement represents Lifespan’s commitment to these goals and their support for the physician community as we work to transform healthcare in Rhode Island.”

According to Timothy J. Babineau, MD, Lifespan’s president and CEO, this agreement supports Lifespan’s ongoing evolution from a system of hospitals into a fully integrated health care delivery system. “Our focus continues to be on enhancing the patient experience and finding the best and most appropriate ways to deliver health with care,” said Babineau. “This agreement allows us to take another step in this direction all while building on our relationship with the provider community and recognizing and rewarding quality care for our patients.”

Karen Rosene-Montella, MD, Lifespan’s senior vice president of women’s services and clinical integration, noted that this agreement emphasizes Lifespan’s commitment to primary care. “As the state’s largest health system, we recognize the importance primary care plays in delivering the best possible care for patients and the best outcomes. By better coordinating patient care among all their providers, whether in an physician’s office or hospital setting, and measuring the quality of that care, patients can expect a more streamlined and seamless experience,” she explained. “This agreement is about having the primary care provider be central to the patient’s care, guiding them through the health care system for a better patient experience.”

The three-year agreement will affect 35,000 commercially insured and Medicare patients. It will involve more than 110 physicians; 40 percent of the physicians are affiliated with patient-centered medical homes and 35 percent are Lifespan physicians.