Advocate Health Southern Symphony: Nearly a year has passed since the establishment of Advocate Health, now one of America’s largest nonprofit health systems. Atrium Health and Advocate Aurora joined forces in December 2022, creating a powerhouse with 67 hospitals, over 1,000 care sites, 150,000 employees, and revenues exceeding $28 billion.
The merger, capturing national attention, united two major systems from distinct regions: Atrium Health covering North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama, and Advocate Aurora operating in Illinois and Wisconsin. Analysts speculate that such cross-regional mergers might set a trend.
Chief Medical Officer Gary Stuck shares insights with Chief Healthcare Executive, emphasizing the cultural and phenomenal aspects of this complex consolidation. The merged entity envisions advancing care, quality improvement, population health, and groundbreaking research nationwide.
Advocate Health’s collaboration with Wake Forest University for a new medical school in Charlotte, N.C., reflects their commitment to academic and research advancements. Stuck highlights the mutual learning between the systems, propelled by their substantial scale.
The merger also opens avenues for expanding services to patients. With a database covering 6 million patients, the system is poised for success in care model transformation. CEOs Eugene Woods and Jim Skogsbergh lead the cultural transformation, fostering a board that embraces the challenges.
Value-based care is at the core of Advocate Health’s mission, focusing on preventive care over the traditional fee-for-service model. Their accountable care organizations achieved notable success, generating $128 million in savings through the Medicare Shared Savings Program in 2022, leading the nation.
Priorities include improving healthcare quality and affordability, addressing the systemic cost issues. Stuck emphasizes the commitment to being change agents and the success of programs like Medicare Shared Savings, showcasing financial results reinvested in patient care.
The transition to value-based care demands full commitment, according to Stuck, making it clear that it can’t be a side hustle. The entire organization, from leadership to frontline teams, plays a crucial role. Data-driven measures, transparency, and continuous improvement are key components.
Advocate Health’s commitment extends to improving health equity, with a $5 billion pledge to enhance access and health in vulnerable communities. Stuck emphasizes the transformative impact of value-based care in closing health equity gaps.
The organization focuses on patient screening for social determinants of health, with a particular emphasis on maternal health, hypertension, and colon cancer screening. Setting priorities and utilizing data-driven measures, Advocate Health aims to transparently share progress with both internal teams and the community.
As the journey unfolds, Stuck expresses confidence in the bright future for patients and the organization. The commitment to value-based care, coupled with academic partnerships and a focus on health equity, positions Advocate Health as a transformative force in the healthcare landscape