Intermountain and UnitedHealthcare Establish Accountable Care Organization to Improve Health Outcomes for Medicare Advantage Members

Intermountain Healthcare (Intermountain), through its company Castell, and UnitedHealthcare have established an accountable care organization (ACO) that’s designed to improve health outcomes for UnitedHealthcare’s Medicare Advantage members through enhanced care coordination.


ACOs are groups of health care providers who agree to work together to coordinate patient care and deliver the right care at the right time. ACOs help shift provider reimbursement to a value-based approach that rewards physicians and advanced practice providers based on their ability to deliver improved health outcomes and a better patient experience.


UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage members who receive care from Intermountain-employed primary care physicians and providers in northern and southern Utah as well as other participating primary care providers in southern Utah are eligible for the ACO.


The primary care providers participating in the ACO will coordinate care for their UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage patients with the support of Castell/Intermountain, including its care management, care coordination, network services and documentation teams.


Through the new accountable care relationship, UnitedHealthcare will provide an enhanced level of data and support to Intermountain to enable its providers to deliver more comprehensive and coordinated care to their patients. For example, UnitedHealthcare will share data about its members’ underlying medical conditions, past treatments, gaps in care, medications prescribed and future care needs.


The data will be actionable and specific to individual patients, giving Intermountain providers a fuller picture of their patients’ health status and arming them with valuable information that supports their efforts to provide quality care. For example, providers can more easily identify patients who are at higher risk for an adverse health outcome such as an emergency room visit or readmission to the hospital, allowing them to intervene more quickly. They can also use the data to help patients manage their chronic conditions and take their medications as prescribed.


Ultimately the ACO will help improve care coordination across specialties and care settings. This in turn can lead to a better experience for UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage members and reduce the burden of having to connect information from each of their doctor visits themselves.


“Expanding our long-standing relationship with UnitedHealthcare provides our patients with enhanced benefits and program options while still emphasizing affordability,” said Marc Harrison, M.D., president and chief executive officer of Intermountain. “Good health goes beyond physical care, which is why we take an approach to health and wellness through programs such as care coordination. The goal is to help seniors live healthier lives.”


“Our collaboration with Intermountain Healthcare through this new accountable care model will support our shared goal of improving both the quality and cost of health care,” said Marc Briggs, CEO of UnitedHealthcare Medicare & Retirement in Utah. “We’re always looking for ways to provide a better health care experience for those we serve through our Medicare Advantage plans and believe this expanded relationship with Intermountain will help us do that.”


The new ACO strengthens the long-standing relationship between Intermountain and UnitedHealthcare. Since 2004, the organizations have shared a commitment to improving access to quality care, enhancing clinical outcomes, lowering the cost of care and creating an exceptional patient experience.


UnitedHealthcare’s more than 454,000 members in Utah, including more than 136,000 Medicare Advantage members, have access to Intermountain’s providers and facilities, including 450 owned and affiliated clinics, 22 hospitals, and more than 4,600 physicians and advanced practice providers across the state. Intermountain’s facilities and health care professionals that offer behavioral health services have also been added to the Optum Behavioral Health network, giving UnitedHealthcare members’ enhanced access to behavioral health care.


Intermountain Healthcare is a team of more than 41,000 caregivers who serve the healthcare needs of people across the Intermountain West, primarily in Utah, Idaho, and Nevada. It is an integrated, not-for-profit health system headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, with clinics, a medical group, hospitals (one that is virtual), homecare, telehealth, and other services. It is one of the nation’s top five health systems for innovation and for providing high-quality care at sustainable costs. Visit for more information.


UnitedHealthcare is dedicated to helping people live healthier lives and making the health system work better for everyone by simplifying the health care experience, meeting consumer health and wellness needs, and sustaining trusted relationships with care providers. In the United States, UnitedHealthcare offers the full spectrum of health benefit programs for individuals, employers, and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and contracts directly with more than 1.3 million physicians and care professionals, and 6,500 hospitals and other care facilities nationwide. The company also provides health benefits and delivers care to people through owned and operated health care facilities in South America. UnitedHealthcare is one of the businesses of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH), a diversified health care company. For more information, visit UnitedHealthcare at or follow @UHC on Twitter.


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Daron Cowley   

Intermountain Healthcare           

(801) 718-3079                                      


Catherine Farrell


(714) 226-4247

Intermountain Healthcare (Intermountain), through its company Castell, and UnitedHealthcare have established an accountable care organization (ACO) that’s designed to improve health outcomes for UnitedHealthcare’s Medicare Advantage members through enhanced care coordination.



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