Regional Leaders Join National Network During a Critical Time for Local Health Improvement Efforts

For Immediate Release
r: Jolie Ritzo
Cell: (207) 491-9979

As the Network for Regional Healthcare Improvement (NRHI) continues to grow, the organization is excited to broaden its reach and have greater insight from local health leaders throughout our country. At the end of 2020, and in January 2021, three organizations whose primary focus is on improving and transforming health and healthcare delivery within their communities joined NRHI: The Detroit Wayne Integrated Health Network (DWIHN), Gary and Mary West Health Institute, and Healthy Alliance IPA.

Many NRHI members are non-profit organizations governed by multi-stakeholder boards that include healthcare consumers, providers, payers, and purchasers. Focusing on a variety of healthcare industry priorities to improve quality, cost, and care, its members work together through programs and aligned initiatives that support and advance local innovation. Most recently, NRHI has been activated by pandemic response efforts and have shown the tremendous value that regional health improvement collaboratives (RHICs) bring to communities throughout the country. Having a platform to exchange promising practices, to problem solve, and to network continues to be critically important to our broad-reaching network and members who serve communities throughout the country. With this, NRHI is delighted to recognize three new members.

Detroit Wayne Integrated Health Network (DWIHN) is the largest Prepaid Inpatient Health Plan in the State of Michigan with an overall budget of approximately $900 million. DWIHN is accredited by the National Committee for Quality Assurance. They understand the immense responsibility they have been given, and they go above and beyond in supporting the people they serve and the hundreds of Providers in their System of Care. DWIHN’s provider network supports and serves individuals with serious mental illness, children with serious emotional disturbances, people with autism, individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and those with substance use disorder.

In joining NRHI, DWIHN acknowledges that NRHI membership will bring an opportunity for DWIHN to be positioned as a national leader working to improve the behavioral and physical health status of those they serve, through partnerships that provide programs promoting integrative holistic health and wellness. Further, their expertise and commitment in the community mental health field will be a great asset to NRHI’s network. They are looking forward to collaborating on future healthcare endeavors.

Gary and Mary West Health Institute, part of California-based West Health, advances high-quality, lower-cost models of care for seniors through their research on the cost of healthcare and healthcare delivery in homes, hospitals, and community-based organizations. Together with a talented and diverse group of researchers and professionals across healthcare delivery, social science, data science, and medical professions, West Health explores opportunities that support senior care. Efforts include improving acute care for seniors in the emergency department, home, and community; providing chronic care settings for older adults that may need care at home; and establishing supportive services so seniors can receive the care they need, at a lower cost, wherever they are.

West Health sees their NRHI membership as an excellent opportunity to benefit “bi-directionally.” Work by NRHI members, such as technical assistance support and toolkits, are very much aligned with the type of impact that they seek to have on the healthcare system and as such they believe there is much to learn from membership and participation in NRHI. They also see their membership as an opportunity to share and disseminate relevant existing and future work that West Health has undertaken through NRHI channels to members and national partners.

NRHI’s newest member is based in the state of New York. Healthy Alliance IPA, one of the first IPAs in the region focused entirely on social determinants of health, collaborates with community partners and health providers of all kinds to address social needs – food insecurity, housing assistance, benefits navigation – before they turn into costly medical problems. Established in 2015, Healthy Alliance IPA’s parent entity, Alliance for Better Health engages medical, behavioral, and social service providers in developing innovative solutions to promote the health of people and communities, with a goal of transforming the care delivery system into one that incentivizes health and prevention.

With more than 100 partner organizations across a six-county area in New York’s Tech Valley and Capital Region, Healthy Alliance IPA prioritizes building health equity for all. By joining NRHI, they are hoping to connect with other organizations doing similar work and expand across the country.

On growing NRHI membership, Craig Brammer, President and CEO of NRHI shared, “Leveraging the power of networks is more vital than ever in this unprecedented moment in time. The Network for Regional Healthcare Improvement is drawing on the practical experience and insight of its national membership to help connect and inform local leaders working to improve the health of their communities.”


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