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Vidant-ECU partnership delivers high quality health care at reduced cost

September 28, 2018 posted by Vidant Communications

Greenville, N.C. – Recently released federal data shows that a partnership between ECU and Vidant Health made significant improvements in the quality of care for Medicare beneficiaries while still achieving significant cost savings last year.

Last month the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced their 2017 performance year financial and quality results for the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP). CMS is the federal agency that runs the Medicare program, which provides health insurance for Americans aged 65 and older who have worked and paid into the system through the payroll tax.

The Shared Savings Program is an alternative to the traditional fee-for-service payment model, offering health care providers and suppliers an opportunity to voluntarily come together in an Accountable Care Organization (ACO) to provide coordinated high-quality care to their Medicare patients while agreeing to be held accountable for the quality, cost and experience of care for an assigned Medicare fee-for-service population.

The recently-released data show that the Coastal Plains Network, LLC – made up of health care providers in Vidant Health and ECU Physicians, the faculty practice of ECU’s Brody School of Medicine – saved Medicare more than $8.9 million last year on the health care provided to their 24,574 assigned beneficiaries.

“This is simply one more demonstration of how Vidant and ECU are better together,” said Dr. Michael Waldrum, CEO of Vidant Health. “It’s proof that we know the patients in our region and the most effective ways to care for them.”

The goal of an ACO is to ensure that patients, especially the chronically ill, get the right care at the right time, while avoiding unnecessary duplication of services and preventing medical errors. It encourages investment in high quality and efficient services, with a focus on achieving better health for individuals, improved population health and lower growth in expenditures.

When an ACO exceeds quality and financial thresholds — which demonstrates achievement of high-quality care and wise spending of health care dollars — it is able to share in the savings generated for Medicare. ECU Physicians and Vidant Health received 44.6 percent of the savings they generated, or $3.9 million, as a performance payment.

“We are so proud of the work our health care providers have done to achieve these results,” said Dr. Mark Stacy, dean of the ECU Brody School of Medicine. “We’re committed to building on the successful partnership we have with Vidant to achieve even bigger and better things for the people of eastern North Carolina.”

Coastal Plains Network is a separate legal entity formed by Vidant Health and approved by CMS in 2014 for participation in the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP). East Carolina University’s health care providers joined Vidant Health in the network on Jan. 1, 2016. 



Media contact: Chad Campbell, 252-258-6618 or


About Vidant Health
Vidant Health is a mission-driven, 1,512-bed health system that annually serves more than 1.4 million people in 29 eastern North Carolina counties. The not-for-profit system is made up of more than 12,500 employees, eight hospitals, home health, hospice, wellness centers, and Vidant Medical Group, a multi-specialty physician and provider group with more than 500 providers in more than 90 locations in eastern North Carolina. Vidant is affiliated with The Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University. As a major resource for health services and education, Vidant has a mission to improve the health and well-being of eastern North Carolina. For more information, visit

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