What an exciting time in health care. The ability to quickly adapt to rapid change is critical to success in tomorrow’s health care environment. Similarly, we are constantly evolving to best serve you, your patients and your communities.
This year has been a year of constant change for our company – and all focused on better serving you. First we merged VHA, UHC and Novation to enhance and strengthen our offerings. Then we announced the proposed acquisition of MedAssets’ Spend and Clinical Resource Management business segment. Finally, we announced our company’s new name, which brings the best of our legacy companies together under a compelling shared entity. And all of this change reflects the transformation that is occurring across the health care industry.
A recent survey we conducted showed that our member executives remain optimistic about the future in the face of change. Their top priorities included implementing new delivery of care models, continuum of care models, and preparing for new models of payment.
In that same survey, member executives also ranked the use of integrated data as critically important to successful delivery of health care – the ability to understand the total cost and outcome of a patient episode across the continuum of care.
Just as you look at new models to thrive in the rapidly changing health care environment, so are we. The good news is that we have been doing this for years.
We introduced the concept of supply networks, drawing on the power of collaboration among like-minded providers to achieve greater cost savings through aligned goals and commitment. We pioneered comparative data analytics usage as well as the strategic economic research necessary to create a financially sustainable national system — all of which continue to deliver exceptional value today.
Following a history of industry-leading innovation, the combination of MedAssets’ and Vizient’s groundbreaking offerings will be considered the industry’s gold standard. In addition, blending these resources with the Sg2 platform provides a wide breadth of market and organizational analytics for health care leaders while being driven by an expansive data set and proprietary business intelligence methodologies. The offerings will be supported with a high-touch, expert-led delivery model to help members and customers translate business and market insight into actionable, measurable change. Together, we will be able to identify opportunities to maximize contract compliance and pricing, and address costs at the service line, MS-DRG and physician levels and execute business strategies that accelerate the delivery of exceptional, cost-effective care.
On the heels of our announcement, many competitors are voicing criticisms of our approach. A few are even disguising marketing as “opinion articles.” This is to be expected, and it shows the healthy competitive landscape of our industry. But embedded within these criticisms are mischaracterizations and inaccuracies. We want to clear those up.
Some may try to say that these moves are all about size – the old mantra that “bigger is better.” We all know that this isn’t always true. Bigger often results in one size fits all. Our approach is, and always will be, about bringing the right solutions to the right member at the right time. We tailor solutions to meet specific member needs.
In fact, our decision to bring our legacy companies together into one and propose the acquisition of the MedAssets’ SCM business had little to do with size, although economies of scale bring obvious benefits. Size no longer has the same meaning in today’s world of health care performance. Now, driving value and cost savings is based on aligning commitment, standardization, and utilization – not on increasing volume. There are areas where scale is important – but we look at scale as something different.
Scale is about bringing together data, insights, leading practices, networking, clinical best practice sharing to create individualized solutions that address specific provider needs.
When 30 health care system CEOs came together in 1977 to found our organization, they created an industry and a movement. A movement that we carry forward today. Health care is delivered locally – we believe cost and quality solutions should also be deployed locally for the benefit of your patients and your communities.
About the author. Curt Nonomaque is president and chief executive officer of Vizient, Inc., the largest member-owned health care company in the country.