June 2017

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Sharing Our Value Proposition

From the Executive Director

by Jeffrey Kluever

This is a really exciting time for BHCG! As I emphasized in the last edition of this newsletter, growing BHCG membership continues to be a primary focus of our organization. In keeping with that focus, we have held numerous meetings and events to share our strong and compelling value proposition with prospective employers and their advisors. More of these informative networking events are scheduled as well as continued outreach to employers and the broker and consultant community throughout our newly expanded market.

Membership events

Recently we held two events featuring intriguing and timely topics that were well attended and received by prospective and current member employers. On April 26 Dr. Ray Fabius engaged the crowd with an address entitled, Population Health, Population Health Management and Building Cultures of Wellbeing. On May 9 representatives from Best Doctors and IBM Watson Health discussed their new collaboration, Oncology Insight. Executive summaries of April 26 and May 9 events are available on our website for review.

June 5 C-suite event

Another BHCG C-suite event was held June 5, hosted by Baird. Highlighting the event was an address by John Raymond, Sr., MD, president and CEO of the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW), entitled: The Roles of The Medical College of Wisconsin and its Commitment to Improving Quality and Cost for the Community. As the only academic medical center in southeast Wisconsin, MCW brings many tangible and intangible benefits to the region and it provides unique clinical power that can't be reproduced in the region.

Dr. Raymond reported that MCW is:

  • In the top third of medical schools in terms of research funding and is in the top 100 of research institutions in the country
  • A major clinical workforce supplier for the state – over one-third of Wisconsin physicians are MCW alumni
  • Undertaking a major cost reduction initiative and is committed to looking at the total cost of care, providing data and working as partners with BHCG and employers

Dr. Raymond also commended BHCG on our efforts, claiming we have been "singularly accountable for keeping the cost of health care down in this part of the state." See Dr. Raymond's presentation slides here.

We also heard from UnitedHealthcare's (UHC) CEO of national accounts, Elizabeth Winsor who gave us an update on UHC's efforts to drive continuous improvement in their systems, processes and service and its 2017 areas of focus. The organization is committed to employer-led innovation, with an emphasis on rich data and tools that inform decisions and optimize employee engagement. She reported UHC now has intriguing evidence that improved health does lead to better business performance.

Elizabeth drove home the point that health care is local – UHC and organizations like BHCG are moving away from "one size fits all" solutions. Employers need customized solutions for individual markets that should be developed through a collaborative process with local providers and include shared risk. See Elizabeth's slides here.

The event wrapped up with a lively panel discussion featuring David Smith, assistant vice president, customer analysis & solutions, UnitedHealthcare; Todd Smasal, director total rewards, Northwestern Mutual; John Elliott, vice president, client development, UnitedHealthcare; and Lisa Mrozinski, director of total rewards, Baird. The panel focused its discussion on the value of BHCG membership and the strategy of the UHC Premium® designation program and the benefits, tools and resources it provides to employers to reach their goals.

Lastly, the panelists were asked why they thought it was important for BHCG to enlist other employers as members. Todd Smasal summed up his thoughts this way, "I feel an obligation to our community and our employees to continue to grow this organization so that we can improve the health and wellbeing of individuals and health care and health care costs in our community. The more of us working on that collectively, the more successful we will be at achieving those outcomes."

Outreach to brokers and consultants

Since I have taken the helm at BHCG, I have sought out the opportunity to meet with many members of the broker and consultant community. In addition to keeping them informed of our programs, initiatives, results and activities, it has been our goal to reach out to these strategic BHCG partners and share with them the many benefits of BHCG membership for their clients.

It is also extremely important to me to hear directly from brokers and consultants about how we can meet the needs of the employers they serve. I thank those with whom I've already met and encourage others to contact me with any questions, concerns or suggestions they may have.

As always, do not hesitate to contact me at 262-875-3312 x1 or at jkluever@BHCGWI.org if you have questions or would like to learn more about the exciting projects BHCG is pursuing.


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The Business Health Care Group leverages member employer purchasing power and knowledge to lead change. We create value through innovative shared strategies to improve health care quality and cost efficiency for employers, employees and the community. BHCG membership exceeds 140,000 covered lives in the 22-county region of eastern Wisconsin.