HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Huntsville Hospital Health System and University of Alabama at Birmingham Health System are partnering to expand health insurance options for seniors and others with Medicare in north Alabama.
Hospital representatives say they will look for opportunities that focus on population health, value-based care and rural health care.
Together, the organizations intend to offer a new Medicare Advantage product through VIVA HEALTH, a sister company of UABHS, as well as explore areas to improve operational performance and efficiencies.
"We have a crisis in health care in America and Alabama,” said Huntsville Hospital Health System CEO David Spillers. “If we are going to see any improvement in the health of Alabamians, we have to work together and change how we have done things in the past. We look forward to working with UAB Health System in this effort.”
VIVA HEALTH is applying to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for approval of a new Medicare Advantage health plan choice in the Huntsville area. In addition to contracting with VIVA HEALTH, Huntsville Hospital Health System may also contract with other Medicare Advantage plans and stand-alone prescription drug plans.
"Huntsville Hospital and UAB are aligned in their commitment to improve health care in Alabama,” said UAB Health System CEO Will Ferniany. “Working with Huntsville Hospital Health System will help us all achieve this goal in North Alabama."
Huntsville Hospital say Medicare Advantage plans like VIVA MEDICARE cover all the benefits of traditional Medicare, typically offer additional benefits and usually include prescription drug coverage. Unlike traditional Medicare, Medicare Advantage plans cap the amount of yearly out-of-pocket costs members pay for medical care, and most charge set copays for doctor visits and hospital stays.