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MM Curator summary

The article below has been highlighted and summarized by our research team. It is provided here for member convenience as part of our Curator service.


[MM Curator Summary]: CVS is launching an ACO in Chicago and its convinced a Uni hospital system to go half-sies. Based on the CMMI REACH model (as seen in NY).


Clipped from:

The Chicago health system and CVS Health are partnering on an ACO that will be part of CMS’ REACH direct contracting model, aimed at improving healthcare access for Chicago-area residents on Medicaid.


Chicago’s RUSH University System for Health is partnering with CVS Health in an accountable care organization patterned after the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation’s redesigned Realizing Equity, Access, and Community Health (REACH) direct contracting model.

The model aims to improve health equity for underserved reisdents by addressing barriers to accessing care, including social determinants of health.

Residents in Chicago and Evanston who access care at CVS Health’s MinuteClinic locations will now have access to personalized care through RUSH, including virtual and home-based care, help with co-pays and transportation, and specialty and wellness services.

While some see retail healthcare services as competitors to traditional healthcare organizations, Chicago’s Rush University System for Health (RUSH) is launching a partnership with CVS Health aimed at improving health equity for Medicaid patients.

RUSH, which comprises RUSH University, three hospitals, and a network of outpatient care sites, is joining a newly created accountable care organization (ACO) developed by CVS Health. The collaboration is based on the redesigned  ACO Realizing Equity, Access, and Community Health (REACH) direct contracting model developed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI).

Through the program, RUSH and CVS Health aim to create a care management network for Chicago-area residents on Medicaid. It will enable members seeking care at MinuteClinic locations in Chicago and Evanston to access additional services, including specialty care, through RUSH.

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“This provides another option for patients at a time when access to high-quality health care is more important than ever,” RUSH President and CEO Omar Lateef said in a press release. “It will help strengthen care coordination for patients, while enabling them to receive services convenient to where they live and work.”

“As part of CVS Health’s care delivery strategy, we are engaging our assets on behalf of this ACO REACH population to help drive high-quality outcomes, promote health equity, and bring healthcare costs down,” added Mohamed Diab, CEO of the CVS ACO. “Our strategic alignment with RUSH has the potential to help improve longitudinal care for their Medicare population of 35,000 beneficiaries.”

The partnership offers not only an interesting example of collaboration in the competitive primary care space, but highlights the efforts of the healthcare industry to tackle barriers to access for underserved populations, including social determinants of health. The program will include access to virtual and home-based care, transportation support for annual wellness visits, cost-sharing options on co-pays, and other incentives and services.

“RUSH has a long-held commitment to improving the health of the communities we serve,” Lateef said in the press release. “This agreement reflects that strong commitment and a terrific opportunity to build upon that foundation of strong community-based programs and partnerships and have impact for patients on day one.”