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TASK FORCE FOR ENSURING ACCESS IN VULNERABLE COMMUNITIES UNVEILS A SET OF STRATEGIES Sinai Health System (Chicago) Participated in Task Force
November 29, 2016 – The American Hospital Association (AHA) today unveiled a report outlining a menu of options for communities, hospitals and policymakers to ensure that vulnerable rural and urban communities have access to essential health care services. As the hospital field engages in its most significant transformation to date, one out of three hospitals is fighting to survive – potentially putting communities at risk for losing their access to local health care services. Sinai Health System was enlisted by the AHA to serve on the task force that developed today’s report.
Says Karen Teitelbaum, President and CEO of Sinai Health System, “For almost a century Sinai has delivered health care to individuals and communities that might otherwise be underserved. Now, possibly more than ever before, access to care is vital to the health of our nation in addition to our region, cities and neighborhoods. We cannot tolerate one system of care for affluent communities and another for communities that are not affluent.”
In recognition of the challenges facing vulnerable rural and urban communities and the need for new integrated and comprehensive health care delivery and payment strategies, the AHA Board of Trustees created the Task Force for Ensuring Access to Vulnerable Communities. Comprised of 29 hospital and health system leaders and state hospital association CEOs, the task force held meetings, heard from policymakers and conducted field hearings to speak with hospital and community leaders during a 15-month period.
“Many hospitals face challenges maintaining access to health care services in their communities and this report provides a pathway to ensure every hospital has an opportunity to be an access point and an anchor of service,” said AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack. “The strategies outlined in this report can serve as a roadmap for all communities as hospitals begin to redefine how they provide more integrated care.”
The taskforce report outlines nine emerging strategies that can help preserve access to health care services in vulnerable communities. These strategies will not apply to or work for every community and each community has the option to choose one or more that are compatible with its needs.
The nine emerging strategies are:
- Addressing the Social Determinants of Health
- Global budgets
- Inpatient/Outpatient Transformation Strategy
- Emergency Medical Center
- Urgent Care Center
- Virtual Care Strategies
- Frontier Health System
- Rural Hospital-Health Clinic Strategy
- Indian Health Services Strategies
The AHA will work with Congress and CMS to create new payment models to support the successful implementation of the strategies. The AHA will also provide assistance and tools to communities and hospitals and health systems looking to adopt the task force-recommended strategies.
The report, with more detailed information on each strategy, case studies and a complete advocacy agenda and assistance strategy, is available at www.aha.org/xxx.
About Sinai Health System
Located on the West and Southwest sides of Chicago, Sinai Health System is comprised of Mount Sinai Hospital, Holy Cross Hospital, Sinai Children’s Hospital, Schwab Rehabilitation Hospital, Sinai Medical Group, Sinai Community Institute and Sinai Urban Health Institute. The entities of Sinai Health System collectively deliver a full range of outpatient and inpatient services, as well as a large number of innovative, community-based health, research and social service programs. We focus our collective depth of expertise and passion to improve the health of the 1.5 million people who live in our diverse service area. Sinai Health System, with our team of dedicated caregivers, is uniquely committed to building stronger, healthier communities.
About the AHA
The AHA is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals that are committed to the health improvement of their communities. The AHA is the national advocate for its members, which includes more than 5,000 hospitals, health care systems, networks, other providers of care and 43,000 individual members. Founded in 1898, the AHA provides education for health car