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Unity and strength: U-M Health System named to national list of top 100 health networks

Integrated Health Network rating recognizes across-the-board performance

ANN ARBOR, Mich. - For more than 140 years, the University of Michigan has operated both health care facilities and a medical school – a public service that now includes three hospitals, dozens of outpatient centers, far-reaching home care services, and more than 22,000 faculty and staff including a 1,650-member physician group.

Today, that all-under-one-umbrella model of care will receive recognition on a national level, as the U-M Health System takes its place on a list of the nation’s 100 most integrated health networks.

UMHS is listed at 54th in the country for its performance on the critical success indicators that contribute to the ranking issued by IMS Health, a leading health care market analysis firm.

The new honor recognizes the strength of UMHS as a unified health care system that has integrated patient care facilities and staff in the U-M Hospitals and Health Centers unit, a Faculty Group Practice made up of physicians from the U-M Medical School faculty, and shared information technology, financial structures, administrative services and other functions.

Each health network in the ranking was evaluated for its ability to operate as a unified organization in eight categories: integration, integrated technology, contractual capabilities, outpatient utilization, financial stability, services and access, hospital utilization, and physicians.

“We are very proud of this recognition,” says Ora Hirsch Pescovitz, M.D., U-M executive vice president for medical affairs and CEO of UMHS. “Not only is it a testament to the strong integration of our Health System’s clinical, academic and administrative structure, but also to the advantages of being an integral part of the University of Michigan and close partner with other health sciences schools and colleges at Michigan,”

“Throughout our history, and especially in the last 15 years, we have grown to provide a full spectrum of high-quality health care in all types of settings, interwoven with medical discovery and biomedical education, that has few parallels nationwide,” says Doug Strong, MBA, CEO of the U-M Hospitals and Health Centers. “This latest recognition by IMS shows the strength that comes from this unity.”

Recently, UMHS announced it has formed a Pioneer Accountable Care Organization, or ACO, under the program run by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

This ACO, which includes the IHA medical group also based in Ann Arbor, recognizes the comprehensive clinical system and focus on quality care that UMHS has created. The ACO builds on the Health System’s strong performance in a five-year physician group demonstration project that saved the federal government money while improving the quality of care for thousands of Medicare participants.

More than 570 non-specialty local and regional health networks and systems are eligible for the IMS ranking; this is the first time that UMHS has actively sought ranking.

In addition to the Integrated Health Network ranking, UMHS has been recognized on a national level many times. For seventeen straight years, US News & World Report magazine has placed the U-M Hospitals and Health Centers on its Honor Roll of the Best Hospitals in America – and recently ranked U-M first in the Detroit metro area in the first such ranking for which U-M was eligible. The U-M C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital also ranked high in all specialties in the US News Best Children’s Hospitals ranking.

Last month, UMHS was named a Top Hospital for quality and safety by the Leapfrog Group, and earlier last year both the National Research Corporation and Becker’s Hospital Review named U-M to their top lists – NRC for the metro Detroit region, and Becker’s for the entire nation. In addition, more than 430 U-M physicians have been named among the Best Doctors in America by their peers.
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