A coalition of ten independent Massachusetts health systems, including 14 community hospitals, have formed the Massachusetts Value Alliance (MVA) to enhance their efforts in delivering high quality, patient-centered and cost-effective care to their communities.
The member hospitals of the MVA collectively represent the largest collaboration of independent healthcare providers in the Commonwealth, with a combined $3.1 billion in total revenue. The 10-member collaborative spans the breadth of Massachusetts geographically, and serves approximately 2 million people in their combined market areas. This alliance is unique in Massachusetts as the only collaboration of independent health care systems.
The MVA was founded in 2016 by Emerson Hospital, Sturdy Memorial Hospital and South Shore Health. Membership has continued to grow and now also includes Berkshire Health Systems, Harrington HealthCare System, Heywood Healthcare, Holyoke Medical Center, Lawrence General Hospital, Signature Healthcare and Southcoast Health. Each MVA member shares a commitment to delivering coordinated, high quality care while focusing on cost-efficient operations.
“The role of community hospitals is to provide outstanding patient care in the most efficient and effective ways possible. The MVA creates a unique opportunity to pool resources and gain efficiencies through scale, which enable member hospital systems to maintain high levels of care while reducing overall costs. The MVA is an important way that Emerson can serve our 25-town community to the highest degree and in the manner our patients have come to expect, while being financially responsible,” said Christine Schuster, President and CEO, Emerson Hospital.
The specific goals of the MVA include:
• The development of group purchasing and shared service arrangements;
• Identification and sharing of best practices to enhance each organization’s ability to affect and lower the total cost of care while enhancing the quality of care; and
• Support for the development of population health management and care coordination skillsets and capabilities.
To date, the MVA has worked to facilitate cost savings for its member organizations through group purchasing of services, including reference lab services and employee health benefits. Other initiatives are underway, including several MVA hospitals working together on the selection and implementation of a common electronic medical record platform.
“We are very pleased with the progress the MVA has made in a short period of time,” said Gene Green, MD, MBA, president of the MVA Board of Trustees and President & CEO of South Shore Health. “Our membership is strong, 14 community hospitals representing 10 health systems. We are committed to working together to lower costs and enhance efficiencies, so we can continue what we do best: deliver high quality care to the people we serve.”
Over time, a number of the MVA member organizations expect to work together to enhance their organizations’ population health management initiatives. The MVA will provide opportunity to exchange best practices among its members with the goal of reducing health care costs to the consumer/purchaser, improving quality and enhancing patient experience. “The benefits are significant,” said Dr. Green. “Through collaboration, community hospitals can secure new equipment and upgrades, achieve efficiencies of scale and gain access to value-added services, all of which is difficult to attain as a single hospital. Together, we are able to accomplish a great deal more for our hospitals, our patients and our communities.”
The MVA is governed by a board of directors and operates on a shared decision-making platform. MVA member health systems remain competitive and independent, each maintaining their strong community focus. The alliance is a unique partnership of like-minded health systems which, in addition to providing economies of scale to improve efficiency and control cost, is bringing innovation to the communities served.
To learn more about the Massachusetts Value Alliance, please visit www.massvaluealliance.org.