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UVM Health Network to become sole operator of OneCare

Published: Sep. 24, 2021 at 6:16 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 24, 2021 at 7:09 PM EDT
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MONTPELIER, Vt. (WCAX) - Next Friday, the UVM Health Network will become the sole parent organization of OneCare Vermont.

The change in the organization won’t mean anything for people seeking health care in the short term, but in the long run, health reform advocates hope it will save money and give providers more tools to make Vermonters healthier.

When Vermont signed onto the experimental all-payer model in 2012, OneCare Vermont was formed in partnership by the UVM Health Network and the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center.

OneCare’s responsibility is to funnel cash from Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance and then disburse it to providers that sign onto the all-payer model.

It’s aimed at prioritizing preventive care and checkups instead of expensive procedures.

With the UVM Health Network taking over as the sole organization, OneCare says it will streamline human resources, data services and it costs.

“This is important work that we’re doing and it’s important that we be there for the future of health care providers in Vermont because we know the federal government is committed in its commitment to health care reform,” said Vicki Loner, the CEO of OneCare Vermont.

Dartmouth-Hitchcock officials stress this does not signal any less of a commitment to the all-payer model. All of their providers and the patients they serve will stay in the all-payer model.

For the reform efforts to work, every provider serving every Vermonter needs to sign on.

They hope streamlining data processes will help bring on more doctors and providers into the model.

UVM and Dartmouth-Hitchcock officials say this governance change will have no effect on your insurance or how you receive care from your doctor.

OneCare and the network say this won’t create an issue of giving the network too much power. OneCare operates as a nonprofit and it has a 21-member board that governs its decisions. Also, regulators have described it as a “coalition of the willing” because every provider chooses whether they want to be a part of OneCare.

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