Two of New Jersey’s leading health care organizations officially joined forces to expand access to high-quality care for the residents of central New Jersey. Surrounded by physicians, nurses and other health care heroes, leaders from CentraState Healthcare System and Atlantic Health System put pen to paper at a December 9 signing ceremony at CentraState, to complete their newly expanded partnership, creating a unique model for health system co-ownership.
The co-membership agreement makes Atlantic Health the majority corporate member in CentraState and CentraState officially joins the Atlantic Health System network of care. The partnership will deliver immediate benefits to patients, physicians and caregivers in CentraState’s communities by strengthening its integrated clinical services, physician network and infrastructure through a capital investment of $135 million, outlined in a five-year plan endorsed by both systems’ boards.
The new model for partnership will provide CentraState with significant resources to support its longstanding community focus while advancing Atlantic Health’s mission to touch more lives in New Jersey through collaborations for high-quality, value-based care. The CentraState board and leadership team will continue to oversee system operations at CentraState and ensure the continued advancement of its mission to enhance health and well-being in its local community through the compassionate delivery of quality health care.
“Together, we will continue to build upon our programs and services for the health of the community,” said John Gribbin, President and CEO, CentraState Healthcare System.
The partners are already making exciting progress in creating new technical and clinical advancements in care. Within the first few months of 2022, CentraState will implement the Epic electronic health record (EHR) platform across its system. Epic will improve efficiency and safety, by providing physicians with a patient’s full and up-to-date medical record. Once complete, CentraState Medical Center and the system’s other sites of care will join Atlantic Health System on Epic, ensuring that no matter where a patient receives care, their medical information will seamlessly travel with them through the MyChart patient portal.
Physicians in the CentraState network have already joined Atlantic Medical Group, one of New Jersey’s largest physician groups. Effective June of 2021, nearly 50 CentraState physicians and health care professionals gained access to Atlantic Health’s nationally recognized services and programs including risk-based contracting initiatives, which have already delivered better results for patients and proven savings.
“Our partnership with CentraState has always been about our shared commitment to keeping patients at the center of every decision as we work together to make care more accessible and convenient for every patient,” said Brian Gragnolati, President and CEO, Atlantic Health System.
CentraState patients will immediately benefit from cutting-edge data analytics capabilities. Based on the clinical experiences from Atlantic Health System’s interactions with nearly one million unique individuals over the last year, these data tools allow caregivers to make more efficient, informed decisions that improve outcomes and reduce costs, as evidenced by the success of the Atlantic accountable care organizations (ACOs). These resources will also accelerate CentraState’s journey from a fee-for-service model of contracting to value-based care.
The co-membership arrangement paves the way for future joint venture opportunities, including ambulatory services and other population health strategies, which will make care more accessible, affordable and convenient for residents in the communities served by CentraState.
The signing was preceded by a favorable CHAPA ruling by a New Jersey Superior Court judge, the last regulatory step in a process that began in early 2020 with the signing of a Letter of Intent and continued with last October’s announcement that the two systems had entered into a Definitive Agreement. That work builds upon an already successful clinical affiliation in oncology and neuroscience and existing relationship in the Healthcare Transformation Consortium, designed to provide more affordable health insurance to healthcare system employees across New Jersey.
This latest venture between two of the state’s leading health systems is a clear reflection of their shared mission and values. Both are grounded by strong ties to their local communities, along with longstanding commitments to clinical excellence, engaged physician leadership, and value-based strategies to improve access to high-quality, affordable health care. Both systems also take great pride in their exceptional workplace cultures that value the contributions of every team member while promoting award-winning innovation and compassionate care.
The new partnership is effective on January 1, 2022.
ABOUT CENTRASTATE HEALTHCARE SYSTEM
CentraState Healthcare System is a fully accredited, not-for-profit, community-based health system that provides comprehensive health services in the central New Jersey region. In addition to offering a full range of leading-edge diagnostic and treatment options, CentraState serves as a valuable health partner focused on the latest ways to prevent disease, promote healthy behaviors, and help people of all ages live life well. Based in Freehold, CentraState is comprised of a 284-bed acute-care hospital, a vibrant health and wellness campus, three award-winning senior living communities, a charitable foundation, and four convenient satellite health pavilions. The system also offers a family medicine residency and geriatric fellowship training program in affiliation with Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. Among its many honors and accreditations, CentraState is one of only 2 percent of hospitals nationwide to earn Magnet® designation for nursing excellence four times. To learn more, visit centrastate.com.
ABOUT ATLANTIC HEALTH SYSTEM
Atlantic Health System is at the forefront of medicine, setting standards for quality health care in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and the New York metropolitan area. Powered by a workforce of more than 18,000 team members and 4,800 affiliated physicians dedicated to building healthier communities, Atlantic Health System serves more than half of the state of New Jersey including 11 counties and 4.9 million people. The not-for-profit system offers more than 400 sites of care, including seven hospitals: Morristown Medical Center in Morristown, NJ, Overlook Medical Center in Summit, NJ, Newton Medical Center in Newton NJ, Chilton Medical Center in Pompton Plains, NJ, Hackettstown Medical Center in Hackettstown, NJ, Goryeb Children’s Hospital in Morristown, NJ, and Atlantic Rehabilitation Institute in Madison, NJ.
Atlantic Medical Group, comprised of 1,000 physicians and advanced practice providers, represents one of the largest multi-specialty practices in New Jersey and joins Atlantic Accountable Care Organization and Optimus Healthcare Partners as part of Atlantic Alliance, a Clinically Integrated Network of more than 2,500 health care providers throughout northern and central NJ.
Atlantic Health System provides care for the full continuum of health care needs through 16 urgent care centers, Atlantic Visiting Nurse and Atlantic Anywhere Virtual Visits. Facilitating the connection between these services on both land and air is the transportation fleet of Atlantic Mobile Health.
Atlantic Health System leads the Healthcare Transformation Consortium, a partnership of six regional hospitals and health systems dedicated to improving access and affordability and is a founding member of the PIER Consortium – Partners in Innovation, Education, and Research – a streamlined clinical trial system that will expand access to groundbreaking research across five health systems in the region.
Atlantic Health System has a medical school affiliation with Thomas Jefferson University and is home to the regional campus of the Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Morristown and Overlook Medical Centers and is the official health care partner of the New York Jets.