UCM Digital Health (UCM) and MVP Health Care (MVP) have announced a new program that will provide MVP members with access to emergency department-level home care.
The program is called Treatment in Place.
“This partnership was really based on the precise concept of keeping people out of the ER, out of the hospital, even out of urgent care and drawing them onto our platform,” Keith Algozzine, CEO of UCM Digital Health, told Home Health Care News. “If we do that, we will actually be able to achieve this triple goal: the right care, the right place, the right time.”
UCM Digital Health is a digital health company based in Troy, New York that offers virtual EMR services to patients in all 50 states. This new partnership marks the first time UCM has partnered with EMS and a healthcare plan to provide at-home care.
MVP Health Care is a New York-based not-for-profit health insurance company serving members in New York and Vermont.
When an MVP member makes an emergency call, an EMS representative is dispatched to the member’s location.
First responders working with UCM now have access to the UCM team, including their medical staff and team of care coordinators, to provide services to patients at home.
Paramedics or paramedics then work virtually with a doctor trained in UCM emergency medicine to quickly treat patients with non-life threatening conditions.
“You can get the same ER team that you would get in the ER, you can get a paramedic to show up and do a lot of the things that we might do in an ER – including the assessment and some of the treatments – and that will offer the patient the amazing advantage of being treated at home compared to a hospital,” Algozzine said.
A program like this also addresses bigger issues, like overcrowded emergency rooms and unnecessary trips to the hospital.
“This is much more than just treating this one patient,” Algozzine said. “Our emergency medical system, our emergency rooms and our inpatient facilities in hospitals are at dangerously critical levels. You can no longer treat patients. So by doing this on an individual level, which obviously provides quality care that the patient loves at a lower cost, what we are really doing is something that we believe is much bigger. We save the system from collapse.”
For EMS organizations, the program enables them to use their resources appropriately, Algozzine added.
Today, the Treatment-in-Place program is ready to be implemented and delivered to MVP members in 18 New York counties, with plans to expand nationwide.
There is and always will be a need for what an emergency room provides, Algozzine said. But now, at a time when digital health and virtual care are growing in popularity in healthcare overall, the ER is getting the same treatment.
“It’s not just because it’s 24/7, a lot of people are 24/7 these days,” Algozzine said. “But it’s the team of people. Every other healthcare location has an appointment with a person. In this world, there is a team of people who are willing to say, “No matter what your problem, we are ready to take care of you.” We built that, except we virtualized it.”
Algozzine said UCM is already in talks with several other payers about coming on board, calling future partnerships “a no-brainer.”
“This program represents MVP and UCM’s unwavering commitment to making healthcare more accessible, convenient and affordable for our customers, while creating new opportunities for efficiencies and savings in the healthcare system,” said Chris Del Vecchio, President and CEO of MVP Health Care , in a statement .