Baylor Scott & White Quality Alliance Collaborates With Dallas Area Rapid Transit to Improve Quality and Health Care Affordability

Dallas-based Baylor Scott & White Quality Alliance (BSWQA) has joined forces with Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART), HealthSCOPE Benefits and Willis Towers Watson in creating an innovative ACO health plan offering.  Effective January 1, 2018 this offering aims to improve quality, affordability and productivity for approximately 3,600 DART employees and their dependents.

The new arrangement is a first of its kind for the Dallas Fort Worth market leading the way for employers to contract directly with Third Party Administrators (TPAs) and accountable care organizations (ACOs) to deliver value-based care focused on generating positive health outcomes and reducing costs.  Like many employers, DART was looking to create a more affordable health benefit option for its employees; a plan centered on a holistic approach to care that is health outcome oriented and resulting in a better, healthier workforce promoting productivity. 

DART's ACO plan uses BSWQA, an ACO which comprises more than 5,000 primary and specialty care physicians, 48 hospitals, post-acute care facilities and other health care stakeholders agreeing to be jointly accountable for improving quality, managing the health of patient populations and reducing health care costs. BSWQA has already proven its capacity to effectively manage the health of patient populations and reduce costs as demonstrated by the group's employee population over a four-year period as follows: 

  • 13 percent fewer hospital admissions due to better coordinated care
  • 19 percent higher use of in-network services for better quality and affordability
  • 0 percent medical cost trend
  • $57 million in savings

DART's ACO plan using the BSWQA network is committed to delivering integrated, coordinated, quality health care that effectively manages medical costs by:

  • Closing gaps in care, such as missed health screenings or prescription refills
  • Helping those with chronic illness to better understand and manage their condition(s)
  • Educating members on appropriate use of hospital emergency rooms
  • Increasing the number of preventive health visits
  • Ensuring follow-up care for people transitioning from the hospital to home

Cliff Fullerton, President of BSWQA says "BSWQA is proud to bring its care model to the employees and dependents of DART.  Our aim is to help our patients better manage their conditions so that they can be healthier and more productive.  And we do this by designing our care model to help patients avoid unnecessary trips to the emergency room or hospital and eliminate unnecessary care."

DART Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Mr. David Leininger and Deputy Executive Director Jesse Oliver believe that this is an opportunity to "put our people first and our brand behind the delivery of care."  Both Mr. Leininger and Mr. Oliver are excited to see the impact BSWQA will have on the health of the DART population.

DART has opted to employ HealthSCOPE Benefits as its Third Party Administrator (TPA) for its newly developed ACO Plan.  HealthSCOPE Benefits supports the ACO Plan's holistic view of health care through its Total Health Management product. HealthSCOPE Benefits through its roots as a network development company is uniquely qualified to collaborate with DART and BSWQA to provide a different level of care to DART members.

DART was guided through this process by the benefit consulting firm Willis Towers Watson.  This is one of the first direct contracts with an ACO in the state of Texas.  Willis Towers Watson representative Jack Tartaro stated "the way employers are approaching healthcare is changing.  There is an abundance of innovative solutions in the marketplace, but the direct contract with BSWQA made perfect sense for DART."

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About Baylor Scott & White Health
As the largest not-for-profit health system in the state of Texas, Baylor Scott & White promotes the health and well-being of every individual, family and community it serves. It is committed to making quality care more accessible, convenient and affordable through its integrated delivery network, which includes the Baylor Scott & White Health Plan, Baylor Scott & White Research Institute, the Baylor Scott & White Quality Alliance and its leading digital health platform – MyBSWHealth. Through 51 hospitals and more than 1,100 access points, including flagship academic medical centers in Dallas, Fort Worth and Temple, the system offers the full continuum of care, from primary to award-winning specialty care. Founded as a Christian ministry of healing more than a century ago, Baylor Scott & White today serves more than three million Texans. For more information, visit: BSWHealth.com