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American Specialty Health and INSPIRIS Win Top Honors in URAC's Best Practices in Consumer Empowerment and Protection Awards
Date:3/26/2008

Esteemed judges spotlight 22 winning programs for setting new benchmarks in

consumer-focused care

WASHINGTON, March 26 /PRNewswire/ -- URAC recognized two programs with Best Practices Awards at a ceremony Tuesday evening spotlighting the 22 award recipients of its first-ever Best Practices in Consumer Empowerment and Protection Awards.

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20030501/URACLOGO )

American Specialty Health was named the Best Practices Award winner in consumer/patient safety for its program, "Reduction in Regional Variation of X-ray Utilization." Programs in this category are broadly related to patient or consumer safety issues such as safe, effective, patient-centered, timely, efficient and equitable care. Outcomes for these programs are limited to health/clinical metrics.

INSPIRIS and Mercy Care Plan of Arizona won the Best Practices Award for "INSPIRIS CarePlus Nurse Practitioner-Led Care" in the integrated care coordination category. Programs in this category are designed to coordinate or manage the care of patients/consumers among different, often isolated, "agents" of care.

"Winning a Best Practices Award is an important signal to the marketplace, a mark of distinction that will resonate in the purchaser community and ultimately among consumers," said Alan P. Spielman, URAC's president and CEO. "This awards competition and conference recognize the programs that are blazing new trails in consumer protection and empowerment and can be used as models for innovation and quality throughout the health care management industry."

In all, URAC honored 22 winners for excellence among entries from health care management, health information technology, health plan and pharmacy benefit management organizations. Entries were judged by a distinguished panel of industry experts in three categories: consumer
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