Sutter Health Invites Public to Join Unique Beginning-of-Life Conversation

Posted on Jul 12, 2017 in Transformation

Today, Sutter Health announced its involvement with a unique online forum for the public to share ideas on how to further enhance care at the beginning of life.

OpenIDEO, an open innovation platform, Sutter Health, a not-for-profit health system, and UCB, a global biopharmaceutical company, invites the community to join the conversation by visiting the challenge on OpenIDEO and answering the question “How might we reimagine the new life experience by addressing the diverse challenges of all mothers, babies, and those who care for them?”

The platform offers a place to share thoughts, collectively improve concepts, receive feedback and potentially launch a fresh idea that supports the diverse challenges of all mothers, babies, and those who care for them. The goal is to reinvent the way we think about and solve for maternal health by building innovative solutions that support access to fair and quality healthcare for all mothers and babies, especially those disadvantaged due to livelihood, socioeconomic status or chronic disease. Worldwide, 4.3 babies are born every second. And every year, 10 million women and adolescent girls experience complications or poor care during pregnancy and motherhood, many of which leave them and their children at risk.

“New life inspires wonder and a feeling that anything is possible,” said Chris Waugh, Sutter Health’s chief innovation officer. “We want to harness that energy to spark ideas which will support new, future or expecting mothers—regardless of their whereabouts or their circumstances. Creative thinking can unlock the potential for our communities to achieve their best health.” Read More

Sutter Health Named 2017 Most Wired

Posted on Jul 10, 2017 in We're Awesome

Most Wired Hospitals Use Technology to Partner with Patients on Health

Technology is making it easier for patients and providers to interact, thus improving communication, safety and patient-provider relationships, according to results of the 19th Annual Health Care’s Most Wired® survey released today by the American Hospital Association’s (AHA) Health Forum.  Not-for-profit Sutter Health earned recognition as one of 2017’s Most Wired ™.

According to the survey, Most Wired hospitals are using smart phones, telehealth and remote monitoring to create more ways for patients to access health care services and capture health information. This year’s results show:

  • 76 percent offer secure messaging with clinicians on mobile devices.
  • When patients need ongoing monitoring at home, 74 percent use secure e-mails for patients and families to keep in touch with the care team.
  • 68 percent simplify prescription renewals by letting patients make requests on mobile devices.
  • 62 percent add data reported by patients to the electronic health record to get a better picture of what is going on with the patient.
  • Nearly half of the hospitals are using telehealth to provide behavioral health services to more patients.
  • 40 percent offer virtual physician visits.
  • More than 40 percent provide real-time care management services to patients at home for diabetes and congestive heart failure.

“In the dynamic field of healthcare technology, adopting and implementing technical innovations is critical to support the evolving needs of our care providers and our patients. Health IT plays a vital role in improving care quality and efficiency, helping control costs and enhancing the patient and caregiver experience,” said Jon Manis, senior vice president and chief information officer for Sutter Health. “On behalf of our entire Information Services team, we are truly honored to be recognized for our support achievements for the third year in a row.” Read More

Sutter Physician Leader Honored with National Medical Fellowships Pioneer Award

Posted on Jun 30, 2017 in We're Awesome

Dr. Arévalo receives the Pioneer Award from Mr. Cástulo De La Rocha, President and CEO of Alta Med.

Sutter Independent Physicians Chief Medical Officer José Alberto Arévalo, M.D., was honored this month with the 2017 Pioneer Award from National Medical Fellowships (NMF). The nonprofit organization is dedicated to increasing the number of underrepresented minority physicians and other healthcare professionals to improve access to quality health care in medically underserved communities.

Dr. Arévalo was selected in recognition of his stellar reputation as a teacher, administrator and researcher who has made exceptional strides in diabetes care. In addition, he was recognized for his leadership and vision as chair of the Latino Physicians of California, and founder and immediate past president/chair of the Sacramento Latino Medical Association.

Dr. Arévalo was honored at NMF’s Los Angeles Champions of Health Awards event on June 20.

Statement by Sarah Krevans, president and CEO, on the Better Care Reconciliation Act

Posted on Jun 27, 2017 in Uncategorized

Sarah Krevans

Sarah Krevans, president and CEO, Sutter Health

While the U.S. Senate today postponed its vote on the Better Care Reconciliation Act, the debate around changes to the Affordable Care Act continues. Through it all, it is essential to ensure that all Americans have access to high-quality, affordable care.

Nearly 20 million Americans gained insurance coverage when the ACA was signed into law in 2010, including about 5 million Californians. The ACA also enacted insurance reforms and established new payment models to reduce costs and improve quality. However, like any other major legislation, there are areas of the ACA in need of further refinements and adjustments. Any changes should move healthcare forward and build on the existing reforms that have expanded coverage and positively transformed healthcare access.

As it stands now, proposals like the Better Care Reconciliation Act, will move us in the wrong direction. We’re concerned about the proposed drastic cuts to the country’s Medicaid program, which would unfairly target low-income families, seniors and disabled patients. We need to remember that nearly one-third of Californians are currently covered by Medicaid. We should also take into account the Congressional Budget Office’s report, which estimates the number of uninsured Americans would increase by 22 million under the Senate proposal. Based on these and other proposed changes that would weaken coverage of pre-existing conditions and essential healthcare benefits, the results could be devastating. Read More

Sutter Health Physician Organizations Earn Elite Honors

Posted on Jun 23, 2017 in Quality, Scroll Images

Six Sutter Medical Network (SMN) physician organizations that participated in the 2017 Standards of ExcellenceTM (SOE®) member survey, including all five medical foundations, earned Elite status today—the highest honor awarded by CAPG, a trade association for physician organizations. The survey measures criteria such as patient experience, population health and affordability.

SMN Elite Status winners (5 stars/highest recognition):

“Our doctors and Sutter care teams continually focus on thinking ahead, learning and innovating to meet the needs of our patients and make them feel supported,” said Jeff Burnich, M.D., senior vice president of Sutter Health’s Medical and Market Networks. “We’re proud of our efforts to improve quality, safety and accessibility, and to provide meaningful care to those we serve in Northern California.”

Read More

Sutter Health and Aetna to Establish New Health Plan in Northern California

Posted on Jun 13, 2017 in Expanding Access, Transformation

Sutter Health, a not-for-profit health care system in Northern California, and Aetna today announced plans to launch a jointly owned health plan. This new collaboration, the first of its kind in Northern California, will bring together Sutter Health’s network of nationally recognized, high-quality doctors and hospitals with Aetna’s leading health plan expertise, cutting-edge data, analytics and health information technology, and shared care management capabilities.

This joint venture will deliver a differentiated, personalized experience for members and is designed to help lower the cost of care, resulting in competitively priced products. Sutter Health and Aetna anticipate offering self-insured commercial products starting mid-2018 in the greater Sacramento, Central Valley and Bay Area communities, as well as fully insured PPO products to follow in early 2019, pending regulatory approval.

This new company will complement Sutter Health’s and Aetna’s current products by providing more choices to Northern California’s commercially and self-insured populations.

By equally sharing ownership and accountability, Sutter Health and Aetna aim to integrate the continuum of care delivery, from wellness to disease management, care coordination, and access. It will also streamline administrative services for members. Read More

Eden Medical Center Acquires New Technology for Complex Brain and Spine Surgery

Posted on Jun 9, 2017 in Quality, Uncategorized

Surgeons Will Soon Use Advanced Imaging to Better See Brain Structures and Nerve Pathways

Deep-seated brain tumors and blood clots have often been beyond the reach of neurosurgeons because the act of surgery risks damaging brain fibers that control body functions like speech, movement and learning. Now, using a new technology called BrightMatterTM, surgeons can map a patient’s brain in 3-D to see where nerve pathways are and plan the best surgical approach around them.

Eden Medical Center is the first hospital in Northern California to employ the system, adding to the already exceptional reputation of Eden’s Neuroscience Center.

Better Planning

The neural pathways in your brain control activities of daily living; allowing you to see, move muscles and speak. While everyone has these pathways, they are laid out differently in each individual.

For this reason, neuroradiologists have had to spend six to ten hours creating a map of brain fibers near the surgical site. The BrightMatter software performs this process in minutes and does it for the entire brain.
“This technology gives me more options to reach a lesion or clot without damaging a neural pathway in the process” said Lawrence Dickinson, M.D., Neurosurgeon, Eden Medical Center.

Better Surgery

The technology also offers an unprecedented view of a patient’s brain or spinal cord in real time, allowing for a shorter surgery and smaller incisions that heal more quickly. The high-powered magnification system can show a patient’s anatomy – magnified 48 times more than what the human eye can see – during surgery.

Better Outcomes

This technology will improve outcomes for patients with brain tumors, stroke, head and spine trauma, as well as patients with chronic neck and back pain. This advancement may also offer surgery as an option for patients with conditions previously deemed to be inoperable – bringing new hope for meaningful treatment.

“This technology will revolutionize the way we manage neurological patients,” said Dickinson. “Patients can now have surgery with much less risk of disturbing the important pathways of the brain, and surgeons and reach places they couldn’t before. This advancement may also allow for smaller incisions and shorter patient recovery time.”

Eden Medical Center thanks the donors to Better Health East Bay, a Sutter Health philanthropic foundation, for provided the funding to bring the BrightMatter technology to Northern California.