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Tufts Medical Center, Vanguard Health Systems Announce Joint Venture

Boston-based Tufts Medical Center, Nashville, Tenn.-based Vanguard Health Systems and the New England Quality Care Alliance — a non-profit physician network of Tufts with 1,600 physicians — have entered into a period of exclusive negotiations to create a new health system in Massachusetts.

The three organizations will develop the specific structure and services of the joint venture over the next few months. The services they are considering include enhanced chronic care and population health management, streamlined administrative services for physicians and hospitals, new insurance products and direct-to-employer services. The system Tufts and Vanguard are creating will build on population health and quality initiatives currently underway at NEQCA. The system will also provide administrative, contracting and technology services for physicians' offices. Under the proposed deal, Tufts will remain an independent, non-profit academic medical center.

The joint venture builds upon the Minuteman Health Initiative — a Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan the three organizations formed in August. The CO-OP is funded by a startup loan of $88.5 million from CMS and will serve as a consumer-governed, non-profit health plan for all Massachusetts residents.

Tufts, NEQCA and Vanguard have a track record of working together to improve patient care. Vanguard-owned MetroWest Medical Center, with hospital campuses in Framingham, Mass., and Natick, Mass., has been a pediatric affiliate of Boston-based Floating Hospital for Children at Tufts Medical Center for three years and an adult affiliate of Tufts Medical Center for two years. The MetroWest Accountable Healthcare Organization, a 165-member physician group, is a member of NEQCA, and The Heart Center of MetroWest, one of the largest cardiology groups in the MetroWest area, is also affiliated with Tufts. The expanded relationship will provide Tufts with a minority stake in MetroWest Medical Center, cementing that affiliation and expanding the possibilities for clinical integration.

More Articles on Hospital Partnerships:

Emory Healthcare, Southern Regional Health Reach Management Deal
BayCare Health System, Sarasota Memorial Health Discuss Alliance
Care New England, Memorial Hospital Sign Letter of Intent

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