Mount Auburn Cambridge Independent Practice Association, Inc. (MACIPA) is a physician membership organization, established in 1985. Over 500 physicians who have privileges at Mount Auburn Hospital are members of MACIPA. Most of the physicians are in small private practices, some are in practices owned by Mount Auburn Hospital. Physicians are located in offices in Cambridge, Belmont, Watertown, Waltham, Somerville, Lexington, Medford, and Arlington, Massachusetts. MACIPA provides support systems to help physicians manage the many new expectations of them including population management, quality improvement, electronic health records, health information exchange and more.
MACIPA was formed to organize physicians when HMOs (Health Maintenance Organizations) began to enter the Massachusetts market. The original focus was to negotiate contracts with payers and to support primary care physicians. MACIPA has evolved into a unique physician organization in Massachusetts, providing a wide range of services to its members. Most recently these include supporting our physicians on electronic health records (EHRs) – implementing, training, hosting, upgrading, maintaining and supporting them on virtually all aspects of the EHR, with our own staff. Our network of physicians has modern communication tools for health information exchange with their colleagues. This improves patient care, by providing better, more accurate information to specialists and from specialists back to primary care doctors and eliminates the need for duplicate tests. We strive to reduce hospital admissions and re-admissions by keeping patients healthy at home and by meeting with them and their families when they are hospitalized in an acute hospital, a skilled nursing or rehab facility.
Our experience over the years has given us a good understanding of contracting, particularly of “risk” contracts which now emphasize improvements to the quality of care offered to our physician members’ patients. Our risk contracting experience and emphasis on quality improvement are important to our contracts with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Tufts Health Plan and Tufts Medicare Preferred and Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare. We are proud of our accomplishments in controlling healthcare costs and improving quality. Our emphasis is on ensuring that patients have the appropriate preventive clinical tests at the right time, e.g., mammograms, colonoscopies, pap tests, immunizations. Our staff of care coordinators support our physicians to arrange patient hospital discharges when the patient no longer needs an acute level of care, ensuring that the patient has an early follow-up appointment post-discharge, managing the patient’s medication and suggesting less expensive alternatives when it is appropriate. Our care coordinators support the sickest, frailest patients and use advanced systems that help to identify which patients need their services most.