Assembly Democrats Louis Greenwald (D-Camden, Burlington), Joann Downey (D-Monmouth) and Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen) have sponsored a bill (A-5977) aimed at improving New Jersey’s healthcare through the creation of a Regional Health Hub Program.
Greenwald authored legislation that created the original Medicaid Accountable Care Organization (ACO) Demonstration Project in 2011, and this bill represents a continuation of those efforts.
In 2015, three organizations were designated ACOs in New Jersey – the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers, Trenton Health Team, and Health Greater Newark ACO, which is a sister organization to the Greater Newark Healthcare Coalition. These three organizations, and the Health Coalition of Passaic County located in Paterson, would be re-designated as New Jersey’s first Regional Health Hub.
Upon the legislation passing the full Assembly Monday, 70-0, the sponsors released the following joint statement:
“For the past several years, the Medicaid ACO Demonstration Project has developed into an essential apparatus for addressing New Jersey’s most difficult and persistent population health issues. By utilizing cutting edge technology and health information exchanges to determine the root causes of health issues impacting New Jersey communities, and by coordinating multi-sector partnerships to address those issues, these organizations have become a critical tool in how we identify and improve health outcomes in our state.
“By transitioning the ACO Demonstration Project into Regional Health Hubs, and by codifying the work they do, we can build upon this successful model and expand throughout the state. This legislation is laying the groundwork for further coordination between healthcare organizations which will lead to significant improvements in the overall health of residents throughout the state.”