David Gillis Design

Climbing Partners:
Engaging and Supporting Providers

The ACO is 1,600 healthcare providers strong. Our participants are primary care providers and specialists serving patients across the state of Maine and into New Hampshire, from North Conway to Belfast to Biddeford. Many are employed by MaineHealth and affiliate systems while others work in private practice. We are a diverse group but share one very important quality in common: unwavering dedication to increasing the value of care we deliver to patients.
Increasing value is a shared goal, and a shared challenge, that asks all ACO stakeholders to contribute to simultaneous quality improvement and cost and utilization reduction. ACO staff, in partnership with providers and health plans, work to set goals for quality and cost that are meaningful, reasonable and support better care experiences and more positive clinical outcomes for patients. We know and appreciate that the work of meeting the goals we set is done by providers and their teams. In response, we strive to keep providers informed, lines of communication open, and offer services that support the practice of value-based care.
Our four physician liaisons have been central to these efforts. During 2018, Dr. Mike Clark, Dr. Julie Grosvenor, Dr. Tom Pulling and Dr. Joel Wirth dedicated time to connecting with providers on ACO issues. Practicing physicians themselves, the liaisons are a vital conduit of two-way communication and engagement. In 2018, they hosted four regional provider dinners, visited dozens of practice sites and made personal contact with more than 400 providers.
The ACO has developed a suite of resources to complement the liaison’s outreach. They include online videos on code status discussions and clinical guidelines, best practice frameworks linked to key quality measures, chronic disease toolkits like COPD Assist and many other useful items collected in the provider resources section of the ACO’s website. In addition, the ACO distributes a monthly electronic newsletter and produces monthly live webinars for providers and all the ACO’s stakeholders.
In 2019, we’re expanding opportunities for providers to interact with ACO leaders, liaisons and staff. Liaisons are hosting breakfasts at practices and organizing fun after-work social events to allow for informal discussion and networking. And, we’re launching a provider podcast called BACON – Brief ACO News - that delivers relevant and timely news along with peer interviews in under 15 minutes – something providers can listen to while driving to work.
“With such a large and diverse team of providers participating in the ACO, we’re excited to offer multiple options for communication and engagement,” says Physician Liaison Mike Clark, who also serves on the ACO’s board and Physician Engagement and Alignment Committee. “In the end, it all comes down to personal connection. Our liaisons, our staff, the members of our committees are all constantly reaching out to providers. Many of them are providers themselves. We’re all connecting around a common goal – higher value care – and that creates a strong bond and a powerful message.”
The ACO has developed a suite of resources to complement the liaison’s outreach. They include online videos on code status discussions and clinical guidelines, best practice frameworks linked to key quality measures, chronic disease toolkits like COPD Assist and many other useful items collected in the provider resources section of the ACO’s website. In addition, the ACO distributes a monthly electronic newsletter and produces monthly live webinars for providers and all the ACO’s stakeholders.
In 2019, we’re expanding opportunities for providers to interact with ACO leaders, liaisons and staff. Liaisons are hosting breakfasts at practices and organizing fun after-work social events to allow for informal discussion and networking. And, we’re launching a provider podcast called BACON – Brief ACO News - that delivers relevant and timely news along with peer interviews in under 15 minutes – something providers can listen to while driving to work.