Alabama | 50 states of population health

KEITH PARROTT. CEO of Brookwood Baptist Health (Birmingham, Ala.)

On the top challenge

"It is really difficult to focus on one main concern, as the issues vary significantly based on socioeconomic status, education and proximity to health providers (particularly in rural Alabama). If I had to pick one challenge, it would have to be the general lack of education and/or motivation to address chronic health conditions. I don't know the exact percentage of care we provide in an expensive inpatient setting that could be reduced or avoided completely with better personal choices on healthy lifestyles and management of chronic issues, but it is significant. This obviously increases cost and drains finite healthcare resources."

On the hospital's response

"At Brookwood Baptist Health, we have a small but steadily growing, yet sophisticated, population health effort driven by our clinically integrated physician group, Brookwood Baptist Physician Alliance. The majority of our active staff, which is a mixture of employed and private practice physicians, contract jointly with the hospital and several health plans (primarily Medicare Advantage) and align incentives to help individuals manage their chronic conditions. On a micro level, we have numerous stories of members who saw dramatic decreases in emergency department visits and inpatient admissions due to active management by primary care physicians and health coaches. On a macro level, we generated several million dollars in savings that we shared with our physician partners. It is a true winning strategy for all parties — hospitals, physicians, payers and patients."

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