Ascension Seton Health Plan, Cigna to Create Products

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Ascension Seton Health Plan logo horizontal Ascension Seton Health Plan, Inc., and Cigna (NYSE: CI) have entered into a joint venture agreement and unique collaboration to offer employers in and around Austin and Waco integrated health care products designed to improve access, affordability and the patient experience.

Ascension Seton Health Plan’s insured and self-insured offerings will be available next year to employers with 51 or more employees within a 13-county area served by Austin-based Ascension Seton and Waco-based Providence Healthcare Network. The health care products will guide customers of Ascension Seton, Providence and affiliates through a more clinically integrated and cost-effective system of care designed to improve quality and patient outcomes, reduce duplication of services and eliminate unnecessary costs.

Ascension Seton Health Plan and Cigna expect to make products available to employers by the summer of 2016. More information is available by emailing sales@seton.org or phoning (512) 324-3350, option 2, then option 8 in the next menu.

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“We recognize that health care is local, so our aim is to offer integrated products that will meet the needs of individuals who live and work in our area,” said Jeff Cook, president and CEO, Ascension Seton Insurance Services, and vice president of Insurance and Value-Based Reimbursement for Ascension, the nation’s largest non-profit health system and parent organization of Ascension Seton and Providence. “We’ll accomplish that with collaborative health plans that present more choices for affordable and personalized health care while maintaining our focus on clinical excellence.”

“This collaboration signals a fundamental shift in how organizations that finance and administer health plans engage with organizations that deliver health care,” said Mike Koehler, market president for Cigna South Texas. “If we expect to drive better health, affordability and experience for the customers we jointly serve, we need to put the customer at the center of all we do through deeper collaboration between payers and providers. That’s the future of health care.”

The arrangement enables Ascension Seton, Providence and Cigna to combine health plan, hospital, clinic, provider and administrative capabilities in a unified effort to improve people’s lives, deliver long-term sustained medical cost savings, and create healthier communities. Drawing on the strengths of both organizations, the arrangement leverages Cigna’s national and regional resources, including a best-in-class administration platform from Cigna’s wholly-owned subsidiary, QualCare Alliance Networks, Inc., as well as the expertise of the company’s clinical and consumer health engagement teams. This enables Ascension Seton Health Plan to focus its local resources on delivering high-quality, coordinated and affordable care and an exceptional customer experience.

The insurance products will emphasize wellness and prevention and will include a health assessment to identify people at risk for chronic conditions and other health issues. The information will guide development of workplace programs to address employees’ greatest needs. Individuals with chronic conditions will have access to caregivers able to coordinate their medical care, help them follow the physician’s care plan, explain treatment options, refer patients to appropriate community resources and help them improve their skills in managing their conditions. Employers can choose plans with a wellness rewards program and health coaching to reduce stress, obesity and smoking. Physicians in the plans will be rewarded for improving quality, efficiency and patient experience.

Stories and interviews on this announcement are posted by the Austin Business Journal, Businesswire and Cigna’s website.

About Cigna

Cigna Corporation (NYSE: CI) is a global health service company dedicated to helping people improve their health, well-being and sense of security. All products and services are provided exclusively by or through operating subsidiaries of Cigna Corporation, including Connecticut General Life Insurance Company, Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company, Life Insurance Company of North America and Cigna Life Insurance Company of New York. Such products and services include an integrated suite of health services, such as medical, dental, behavioral health, pharmacy, vision, supplemental benefits, and other related products including group life, accident and disability insurance. Cigna maintains sales capability in 30 countries and jurisdictions, and has approximately 89 million customer relationships throughout the world. To learn more about Cigna®, including links to follow us on Facebook or Twitter, visit www.cigna.com.

About Ascension Seton Health Plan, Ascension Seton and Providence Healthcare Network

Ascension Seton Health Plan is part of Ascension Seton and, together with Providence Healthcare Network, comprises Ascension’s Texas health system. With operations in 24 states and the District of Columbia, Ascension is the largest non-profit health system in the U.S. and the world’s largest Catholic health system. In FY2015 Ascension provided nearly $2 billion in care of persons living in poverty and other community benefit programs. More information is available at www.ascension.org.

Ascension Seton operates more than 100 clinical locations, including four teaching hospitals that will be training and research sites for Dell Medical School at The University of Texas starting in 2016. Ascension Seton conducts research in such areas as the prevention and treatment of stroke, traumatic injury, epilepsy, cardiovascular disease, chronic condition management and pediatric medicine. Ascension Seton also operates Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas, which serves children in 46 counties. www.seton.net

Providence operates a continuum of care that includes a major health center; 17 clinic locations; two urgent care clinics; a psychiatric and substance abuse facility; and a premiere community for independent living, assisted living, long-term and sub-acute care. Comprehensive women’s services include a Women & Newborns Center, Breast Health Center and Waco Center for Women’s Health. www.providence.net.

About Ascension

Ascension (www.ascension.org) is a faith-based healthcare organization dedicated to transformation through innovation across the continuum of care. As the largest non-profit health system in the U.S. and the world’s largest Catholic health system, Ascension is committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. In FY2015, Ascension provided nearly $2 billion in care of persons living in poverty and other community benefit programs. Approximately 160,000 associates and 36,000 aligned providers serve in 2,000 sites of care – including 137 hospitals and more than 30 senior living facilities – in 24 states and the District of Columbia. In addition to healthcare delivery, Ascension subsidiaries provide a variety of services and solutions including physician practice management, venture capital investing, investment management, biomedical engineering, clinical care management, information services, risk management, and contracting through Ascension’s own group purchasing organization.