Buffalo, NY

Health Insurer Awards Hospitals $28 Million for Quality Improvements

Thirty-one upstate New York hospitals and health centers earned a combined $28 million in quality improvement payments from the Rochester-based health insurer that includes Univera Healthcare in Western New York. The funds are part of the nonprofit health insurer’s Hospital Performance Incentive Program which, since 2005, has paid out more than $400 million in quality improvement incentives. 

“It’s part of our mission to ensure that all in our communities have equitable access to high quality health care,” says Univera Healthcare President Art Wingerter. “The foundation for achieving that is a collaborative relationship with our local hospital and physician partners.” 

Four hospitals and health systems in the Western New York region participated in this program in 2022, sharing $556,537 in quality improvement incentive payments. Participating hospitals included Erie County Medical Center, Kaleida Health, Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, and UPMC Chautauqua.    

“In 2022, the Hospital Performance Incentive Program evaluated participating hospitals on projects that are in alignment with and responsive to the ever-changing health care environment,” says Lorna Fitzpatrick, M.D., Univera Healthcare vice president medical affairs and senior medical director. Participating hospitals and health centers met goals in the following areas: 

•    Clinical Processes of Care – Focused on improvements in follow up after hospitalization; quality measures related to diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and surgical care; and other quality improvement measures unique to each participating hospital,
•    Patient Safety – Centered on reductions in hospital-acquired infections, readmissions, and other adverse events or errors that affect patient care,
•    Patient Satisfaction – Used the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems survey, which is a national, standardized, publicly reported survey of patients’ perspectives of hospital care.

In addition to meeting required clinical and patient safety measures in 2022, other nationally endorsed measures and target outcomes were jointly agreed upon by each hospital and the health insurer using benchmarks established by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and others.          

Peter Kates, (716) 983-8765, peter.kates@univerahealthcare.com

Univera Healthcare is a nonprofit health plan that serves members across the eight counties of Western New York. With more than 500 Buffalo-based employees and a local leadership team, the company is committed to attracting and retaining a diverse workforce to foster innovation and better serve its members. It also encourages employees to engage in their communities by providing paid volunteer time off as one of many benefits. Univera is part of a Rochester-based health insurer that serves more than 1.5 million members across upstate New York. Its mission is to help people live healthier and more secure lives through access to high-quality, affordable health care, and its products and services include cost-saving prescription drug discounts, wellness tracking tools and access to telemedicine. To learn more, visit UniveraHealthcare.com.


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