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Bridges to Excellence Announces New Implementation Programs for Health Plans and Additions to Board of Directors

WASHINGTON, Dec. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- To make it easier for health plans to recognize and reward doctors who demonstrate they have made significant improvements in the management of patients and deliver quality care, the non- profit Bridges to Excellence (BTE) has developed two new ways for plans to effectively implement BTE. The BTE Inside Certification and the BTE Incentive and Reward Program Endorsement programs are designed to eliminate redundant provider incentives and reduce administrative expenses for employers.

"These initiatives have been developed so that health plans can more easily integrate BTE into their operations and employers can understand which plans have embraced our core principles of community collaboration and recognizing and rewarding physicians for meeting specific quality criteria," said BTE CEO Francois de Brantes. "Shifting to a more flexible implementation plan will increase market coordination and lead to increased physician attention and better improvement."

Health plans can choose from two options

Both options will enable plans to demonstrate to employers that they are complying with the Four Cornerstones of Value-Driven Care (utilizing health information technology, measuring and publishing quality information, measuring and publishing price information, and creating positive incentives for high quality, efficient health care) and contributing significantly to the transformation of physician practices. Health plans and employers can find additional information on Bridges to Excellence's Web site:

Designed for health plans that want to implement the traditional BTE model of performance measurement and quality awards, the BTE Inside Certification focuses solely on the plan's execution of BTE programs and rewards and recognizes good quality.

The BTE Incentive and Reward Program Endorsement is intended for plans developing their own network-wide incentive and reward program. The focus is program-specific around the types of data used to measure quality and the weight given to those data. Physician and Hospital Quality (PHQ) certification -- National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) standards which assess how organizations measure the quality provided by network physicians and hospitals enabling plan members to make better health care decisions -- is a condition for participation.

New officers and directors for 2008

New officers elected for 2008 include Charles F. Montreuil, Vice President, Corporate Human Resources, Carlson, who was named president and board chair; George J. Isham, M.D., M.S., Chief Health Officer and Plan Medical Director for HealthPartners will serve as secretary; and Pascale Thomas, Director of Planning, Communications, and Public Policy, Verizon Communications will be treasurer. Troyen A. Brennan, M.D., M.P.H., Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of Aetna Inc. is joining the board as a director.

"Bridges to Excellence plays a critical role in value-driven health care purchasing, and I look forward to working with my colleagues on the board to continue improving quality and patient outcomes," said BTE President and Board Chair Charles Montreuil of Carlson.

About Bridges to Excellence

Bridges to Excellence (BTE) is a non-profit coalition-based organization created to encourage significant leaps in the quality of care by recognizing and rewarding health care providers who demonstrate that they deliver safe, timely, effective, and patient-centered care. BTE works with large employers, health plans, providers and a wide range of organizations that have a shared goal of improving quality and patient outcomes. For more information, visit

SOURCE Bridges to Excellence
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