Dignity Health Mercy Gilbert Medical Center, in an effort to ensure the delivery of effective and efficient comprehensive orthopedic services to the community, has entered into a management services agreement with OrthoArizona Southeast Valley Co-Management Group (OMG). Under this “co-management” agreement, OMG will oversee the entire Orthopedic service line at Mercy Gilbert, emphasizing quality, patient safety, convenience, efficiency, and cost containment. The OMG model is inclusive of all physicians and is open to participation from other medical staff.
“The rationale for this agreement is to create and standardize best practices, processes and procedures with a focus on systems of care,” said Tim Bricker, president and CEO of Chandler Regional and Mercy Gilbert Medical Centers.
Co-management arrangements are increasing in importance as health care organizations look for ways to team with physicians to enhance quality and improve patient outcomes while at the same time reducing the cost of care. Mercy Gilbert has chosen to work with OMG, a division of OrthoArizona, one of the premier providers of orthopedic services in the Valley, with more than 70 physicians specializing in all areas of orthopedics including:
- Foot and ankle surgery
- Fractures and dislocations
- Hand surgery
- Orthopedic spine surgery
- Sports medicine
- Total joint replacement
This agreement helps to design a comprehensive orthopedic program around a set of management tasks. Some of these tasks include designing a care plan for all orthopedic patients; implementing and directing strategic, financial and operational plans; developing and overseeing all cost containment activities; evaluating and recommending equipment purchasing and assisting in developing operational and capital budgets. This type of agreement is important for the orthopedic patient because it elevates the level of care a patient receives by defining a stringent set of quality metrics.
“In a little over a year we’ve already seen drastic improvements in our quality of care,” said Rudy Apodaca, vice president of operations at Mercy Gilbert. “Our length of stay has dropped, patients are going home the day after surgery and our infection rates are close to zero. Patient satisfaction has been phenomenal and we’ve really seen a reduction in the variability of our costs.”
Mercy Gilbert was granted Orthopedic Joint Replacement for Total Hip and Knee certification by Joint Commission in 2013. The two-year certification is given for compliance with consensus-based national standards; effective and consistent use of appropriate, evidence-based clinical practice guidelines for the hip and knee replacement patient population; collection and analysis of a minimum of four performance measures specific to the hip and knee replacement patient population.