Minnetonka, Minn. – The River Falls, Ellsworth and Spring Valley Medical Clinic, divisions of Western Wisconsin Medical Associates (WWMA), received a “Raising the Bar” Innovation Award from Medica for making patient visits more efficient, comprehensive and more customized for the patient.

Starting in 2005, The Clinics implemented a new treatment approach whereby office visits are combined for both chronic and preventive care needs. Based on clinical guidelines, the result is that additional tests, exams and immunizations are offered during all patient visits. This allows the clinics to use a single process focused on any chronic illness and all appropriate preventive services for a given patient. The process is followed in all five WWMA clinics, which are located in Ellsworth, Hudson, New Richmond, River Falls and Spring Valley.

According to River Falls Medical Clinic Administrator Jon Pedersen, patients began to understand and expect that providers would offer needed services even when they were seen for an acute issue. Patients commented on their appreciation that services were usually provided without the need for another appointment and that the providers cared about their health. Patient satisfaction surveys were done each year and results improved as the process improved.

“We take great pride in coordinating care with our patients to achieve their health and wellness goals,” said Dr. Chris Tashjian. “We have a committed team of professionals who genuinely care about the success of each patient.”

“Medica is very pleased to recognize Western Wisconsin Medical Association with this Raising the Bar Innovation Award,” said Dr. Jim Guyn, Medica’s medical director for provider relations. “By creating a setting where medical needs can be taken care of at the same place and time, they have created a “medical home” for all of their patients, which we believe is an essential part of the healthcare system of the future.”

With its “Raising the Bar” innovation award, Medica seeks to recognize the work of provider groups — from single-site practices to healthcare systems — that are undergoing unique changes to improve patient care and have proven results, through measures of clinical outcomes or effectiveness. The award highlights providers who demonstrate how they are leading the way in improving quality of care and setting up systems and processes to sustain it.

About Medica
Medica is a health insurance company headquartered in Minneapolis and active in the Upper Midwest. With nearly 1.4 million members, the non-profit company provides health care coverage in the employer, individual, Medicaid, Medicare and Medicare Part D markets in Minnesota and a growing number of counties in North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin. Medica also offers national network coverage to employers who also have employees outside the Medica regional network.

Medica has the highest accreditation status, Excellent, from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA®) for its Minnesota Medicaid HMO plans and commercial health plans in Minnesota and North Dakota. Medica’s vision is to become the community’s health plan of choice, trusted for its integrity, respected for its service, and admired for its commitment to innovation and efficiency.