agilon health Provides Practices with Resources and Support During COVID-19 Crisis

Leaders are revealed during a crisis and during the COVID-19 emergency, agilon health is seeing its physician partners and healthcare workers rise to the challenge. In an effort to help protect and support the first line of defenders during this unprecedented pandemic, agilon health is uniting with its physician partners to provide critical  resources and support for their practices.

Ben Kornitzer, M.D., Chief Medical Officer of agilon health, stated, “We are humbled by the extraordinary lengths that our physicians are going to in order to protect and treat their patients. agilon health is concerned about the safety of physicians and their staff members who stand in the line of fire during this crisis. The virus doesn’t discriminate among doctors, nurses and patients — and our physician partners are facing this pandemic with inspiring heroism and courage.  But the disruption of managing this crisis is putting incredible pressure on private practices and challenging their sustainability.”

agilon health is taking the following steps to assist physician practices during this trying time:

  • We are supporting rapid deployment of tele-health capabilities, including operational workflows and best practices for tele visits – allowing doctors to consult with their senior patients via their smart phone or the internet;
  • We host a daily conference call for physician practices. This “huddle” allows leaders and practicing physicians to identify areas of concern and share ideas and best practices to resolve them;
  • We have brought national practice experts in epidemiology, palliative care, and provider well-being to our partners’ daily huddle;
  • We launched an online “connected community” of physicians with the most up-to-date clinical protocols and guidelines to enable a forum for exchanging operational best practices;
  • We are leveraging our analytics platform to identify senior patients at greatest risk to help our partners target care management resources;
  • We are providing practices with customized patient-facing email templates highlighting safety tips and office guidelines;
  • We are deploying protocols for care managers to reach out to frail patients, including a standard checklist that:
    • Ensures patients have access to medical services and basic needs, including food, social support, medications, and supplies;
    • Walks patients through how to initiate a tele-visit and assists with using technology;
    • Explains practice recommendations for social distancing, prescription refills, hand hygiene, and other safety measures;
    • Urges patients to contact their PCPs before going to the emergency room or hospital;
  • We are sharing with partners up-to-date information on regulatory changes that impact the types of services they provide and the way those services are delivered;
  • We are advocating with the federal government for immediate financial assistance for independent physician practices on the front line of care. agilon health has joined several coalitions of like-minded organizations that champion the role of independent physicians. They are sharing physicians’ feedback to members of Congress and the Administration requesting financial help to avoid the risk of widespread physician practice failure —  a very real threat to the sustainability of the healthcare system. (See letter to Congress here.)

Independent physician practices do not have large endowments and other substantial assets to get through the COVID-19 crisis.  However,  the agilon health team is working diligently to ensure that our physicians practice partners have the resources they need to care for patients and meet the challenges posed by COVID-19.