An aging population and shifting reimbursement models are spurring acute care and post-acute care, or PAC, providers to work more collaboratively. As the percentage of older Americans grows and the incidence of chronic disease increases, new models of care that extend outside of hospitals’ walls and leverage medical advances across nonhospital sites of care will be required. Simultaneously, new value-based payment models incentivize acute care and PAC providers to work together to improve care coordination, quality and cost efficiency.
Responding to these trends, hospitals and health systems increasingly are forming PAC preferred provider networks. These networks are partnerships between hospitals and PAC providers that focus on facilitating smooth transitions between care settings, preventing unnecessary hospital readmissions and optimizing health outcomes for patients. While some hospitals are looking to buy or build PAC services as part of their owned network of services, more organizations are instead looking to align with PAC providers by forming PPNs. Through these networks, hospitals and PAC providers exchange clinical information, align care management protocols and, increasingly, share savings.
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