Wellmont Medical Associates named to elite, high-performing list of medical groups

Wellmont Medical Associates has been named to an exclusive list of medical groups honored with the American Medical Group Association's 2014 Acclaim Award.

AMGA recognizes a select few groups each year in its Acclaim Award program, and Wellmont Medical Associates is the only honoree in our region. In fact, Wellmont Medical Associates is just the second group ever to be recognized with an Acclaim Award across Tennessee, Virginia, North Carolina, Kentucky and West Virginia.

This achievement puts Wellmont Medical Associates in the company of widely recognized and respected organizations such as Mayo Health System, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Henry Ford Health System and Geisinger Health System.

Wellmont Medical Associates’ status as an Acclaim Award honoree comes a year after it received Level 3 certification for its patient-centered medical home from the National Committee for Quality Assurance.

Since its formation, the organization has completed many initiatives, including:

  • Attaining an overall hospital readmission rate for Medicare patients of less than 11 percent, which is lower than the national average
  • Implementing a goal for comprehensive health screenings on the managed care population older than 65
  • Making major strides in care for diabetes and high blood pressure patients
  • Opening a charity clinic in Kingsport to serve the needs of patients who would not otherwise receive care because they do not have the funds
  • Reserving 10 percent of a provider’s calendar for same-day appointments

“We have engaged in a thorough process to examine our methods of operation and take them to the next level of excellence,” said Dr. Stephen Combs, a medical doctor who serves as chief executive medical officer for Wellmont Medical Associates. “Our organization has taken a comprehensive approach that has resulted in high-quality care for a broad spectrum of patients.

“This will not be the end of the story, as we will continue to look for ways to bolster our patient-centered focus to care, but our patients and their families should be comforted to know this is an example of our commitment to best practices.”

In addition to addressing an individual’s health needs, Wellmont Medical Associates has also concentrated on the region’s state of health. This area was ranked as the third least healthy in the United States by Gallup-Healthways in 2013.

Donald W. Fisher, the American Medical Group Association’s president and chief executive officer, praised the work of Wellmont Medical Associates and the other two winners.

“These organizations led efforts to improve their ability to provide patients the health care they need, want and deserve,” Fisher said. “We salute the dedication of the organizations’ leadership and health care providers in improving patient outcomes, efficiency, coordination and organizational and clinical integration. Their ongoing efforts will ensure that their patients will receive quality, value-based care throughout their lives.”