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Independent Physicians Network (IPN) was first developed in 1984 in response to Medicaid managed care. The group was created by 200 physicians, mostly pediatricians, in 1984, when Wisconsin went to managed care for its medical assistance program. Adult primary care providers and a full complement of specialists were added over time as the focus broadened to include commercial managed care. Today IPN has more than 900 physicians covering all specialties and IPN provides services to commercial, Medicaid and Medicare members for several managed care plans. IPN physicans use all area hospitals and contracts with many freestanding sites.

 

IPN’s mission, to develop, protect and enhance the capability of member physicians to maintain a quality practice, has become a reality by focusing on three strategies:

 

  • Educating and Supporting its Member Physicians

    IPN works closely with its member physicians to insure that each physician understands IPN’s services, the expectations IPN has of them as a physician and the resources available for the physician to help them better manage their patients. The process starts during the orientation that each physician receives when they first join IPN and continues through regular meetings with IPNs Medical Directors and staff.

     

  • Working closely with its Managed Care Plan Partners

    IPN works closely with the various healthplans it contracts with to share information critical to better managing patient care. Critical to this is sharing of claim and clinical data between IPN and the plans. Both IPN and the plans utilize the data to identify high risk patients, clinical trends and patterns which are critical to better patient care.

     

  • Improving Quality and Lowering Costs

    Many of the actions IPN takes are intended to improve health quality and outcomes and lower costs. IPN has implemented several patient outreach programs to increase patient compliance with preventive services, as well as treatment of chronic diseases. IPN utilizes the data it receives to work with its physicians to identify and proactively treat patients with high risk diagnoses, i.e. asthma and diabetes.

     

While many other physician organizations have come and gone during the past twenty years, IPN continues to grow and is clearly demonstrating that its services provide high quality of care at an effective cost for all of its patients.