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Alven Weil
Premier healthcare alliance

Amanda Forster
Premier healthcare alliance

Hawaii hospitals, HMSA partner with national Premier healthcare alliance to improve care, better control costs for Hawaii residents

Advanced Hospital Care program is the nation's first statewide partnership between a health plan and hospitals to measure patient care

HONOLULU, HAWAII and CHARLOTTE, N.C. (May 12, 2011) The Hawaii Medical Service Association (HMSA) has partnered with its statewide network of hospitals and the Premier healthcare alliance on Advanced Hospital Care, a new initiative to improve quality and reduce costs for residents of Hawaii.

HMSA will sponsor all eligible Hawaii hospitals to participate in a national program built by the Premier healthcare alliance that is setting the standard for patient-centered, high quality and efficient healthcare. The four-year program sets targets and helps the hospitals measure and speed performance improvements that will:

Over 30 months, this Premier performance improvement program has saved 25,235 lives and $2.85 billion in costs among a wide range of 157 hospitals in 33 states across the United States.

"We have been working with our statewide network of hospitals to introduce our own Advanced Hospital Care program," said HMSA Senior Vice President Hilton Raethel. "We believe that teaming up with hospitals to ensure better care for patients can also slow the unsustainable growth in healthcare costs."

"Premier's high-performing healthcare framework is a major and critical component of our Advanced Hospital Care program, and we appreciate that our hospital partners are willing to work with Premier and this program," said Raethel.

Kevin A. Roberts, president and CEO of Castle Medical Center, noted, "This new partnership has considerable promise to improve care by giving us tools and resources needed to compare ourselves against national benchmarks and work collaboratively with some of the best hospitals in the nation on performance improvement. We look forward to working with HMSA and Premier."

The goals of Advanced Hospital Care also align closely with the healthcare reform law, which includes a national requirement for Medicare to pay hospitals based on their achievement of quality benchmarks. In addition, Advanced Hospital Care can help Hawaii hospitals meet new goals set by the Department of Health and Human Services through the Partnership for Patients program to reduce preventable errors in hospitals by 40 percent and preventable complications by 20 percent. Advanced Hospital Care can also help Hawaii providers avoid payment penalties from Medicare that will be phased in over the next two years for hospitals that have higher than expected readmission and infection rates.

Using the nation's largest comparative database for hospital performance, Premier and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement identified the main drivers that lead to deaths, errors, improved patient experience, and excessive costs. Through participation in the Advanced Hospital Care program, Hawaii hospitals are targeting improvement opportunities in these areas, comparing themselves against each other and national standards, carefully measuring progress, and sharing best practices.

"We appreciate the opportunity that HMSA and these hospitals have given us to bring our nationwide knowledge together to improve care across the state," said Premier President and CEO Susan DeVore. "We have a disciplined, measured and organized methodology for building and sustaining change. Programs such as Advanced Hospital Care have already been proven on the national scale, producing dramatic quality improvements that benefit patients."

About HMSA
HMSA is a nonprofit, mutual benefit association founded in Hawaii in 1938. It is governed by a community board of directors that includes representatives from healthcare, business, labor, government, education, clergy and the community at large. HMSA is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Nationally, HMSA and 38 other Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans provide worldwide coverage to more than 100 million members. For more information, visit

About the Premier healthcare alliance, Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipient
Premier is a performance improvement alliance of more than 2,600 U.S. hospitals and 86,000-plus other sites using the power of collaboration and technology to lead the transformation to coordinated, high-quality, cost-effective care. Owned by hospitals, health systems and other providers, Premier operates a leading healthcare purchasing network with more than $4 billion in annual savings. Premier also maintains the nation's largest clinical, financial and outcomes database with information on 1 in 4 patient discharges. A world leader in delivering measurable improvements in care, Premier works with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Premier also has an office in Washington. Stay connected on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.