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Indiana Health Information Exchange lands big insurer

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UnitedHealthcare has become the second health insurer to join Quality Health First, a pay-for-performance program operated by the Indiana Health Information Exchange, the exchange announced Tuesday.

The agreement means the state's two most dominant health insurance players are part of the IHIE program.

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield has been offering doctors bonuses for top-quality care through the program for the past year. Quality Health First uses doctors’ own records, as well as lab and test results, to track how well those doctors are doing at offering preventive care and managing patients with chronic diseases.

Right now, more than 900 physicians participate in the Quality Health First program, receiving monthly reports about their patients. Health insurers offer bonuses to doctors whose patients show the best compliance and outcomes on those reports.

Minnesota-based UnitedHealthcare insures more than 500,000 people in Indiana. Among employer-sponsored plans, UnitedHealthcare is the state’s second largest health insurer, claiming about 11 percent of the market, according to 2008 data from Tennessee-based HealthLeaders-InterStudy.

Anthem, a subsidiary of Indianapolis-based WellPoint Inc., controls 34 percent of the state employer-sponsored market.

“As one of the leading health insurers in Indiana, we knew it was important to support and join IHIE’s Quality Health First program, which we believe will improve physician-patient relationships, improve the cost of health care and ultimately improve outcomes,” said Dan Krajnovich, UnitedHealthcare’s CEO in Indiana, in a prepared statement.

 

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