Network of clinics aims to reduce spending on ER visits

Reducing unnecessary emergency room visits continues to be a goal for hospitals seeking to control healthcare spending.

The Health Care Cost Institute projects that the average price for an outpatient emergency room visit climbed 31 percent between 2012 and 2016 to $1,917. And a white paper from Premier examining emergency department visits across 750 U.S. hospitals showed about 4.3 million visits from patients with at least one chronic condition could have potentially been avoided, with potential savings of up to $8.3 billion annually. 

CareMore Health, a national care delivery system with a network of clinics that provide primary care, behavioral health and other services to Medicaid and Medicare patients, is making efforts to address spending on ER visits in Texas, according to D CEO magazine.

Karim Kaissi, general manager for CareMore Health in Texas, told the publication patients may have as many as four appointments in one clinic visit, depending on the care needed, and the goal is to provide holistic care. The healthcare organization reportedly focuses on providing quality care to these complex and often expensive patients while reducing cost and utilization.

Mr. Kaissi said CareMore, which opened in Texas last year, said the healthcare organization is also working to remove transportation barriers to healthcare access and use community health workers to connect the patients with services that address social determinants of health such as housing and food.

Access D CEO's full report here.  


More articles on healthcare finance: 

10 hospitals seeking RCM talent
Patient billing protections, 'fair reimbursement' among recommendations in new report from Massachusetts health commission
RCM tip of the day: How to measure the patient financial experience



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