LACONIA — LRGHealthcare, together with the other four members of the Granite Healthcare Network, LLC, have joined with Tufts Health Plan to form an insurance company — Tufts Health Freedom Plan.
Rachel Rowe, executive director of the Granite Healthcare Network, described the insurance company as "unique" and "innovative," a the first health insurer wholly owned by healthcare providers. "The partners have a shared vision," she said, explaining that each seeks t provide the highest quality of treatment at affordable costs.
In addition to LRGH, Granite Healthcare is comprised of Catholic Medical Center, Concord Hospital, Southern New Hampshire Health System and Wentworth-Douglass Health System.
"Tufts Freedom Health Plan was created to meet the needs of the residents of New Hampshire, " said Thomas Crowell, president and chief operating officer of Tufts Health Plan. He added that the company will "provide superior care management along with innovative health insurance products, all with the commitment to stabilize health care costs for our members and the business community."
Rowe said the company has filed with the New Hampshire Insurance Department and expects to provide a broad network that will include all 26 hospitals in New Hampshire. She anticipates that operations will begin on January 1, 2016 with the immediate enrollment of the approximately 15,000 employees, spouses and dependents of the five hospitals of the Granite Healthcare network.
The Granite Healthcare Network was formed four years ago to leverage the resources of the members to enhance the quality and control the cost of care by managing common risks, sharing best practices, exchanging information and making joint purchases. Founded in 1979, Tufts Health Plan, which counts more than 1 million members, was ranked the top private health plan in the country by the National Committee for Quality Assurance.
Brian Wells has been named president of the new company. Wells, a New Hampshire resident, recently served as chief executive officer of Houston-based Memorial Hermann Health Solutions after working for CIGNA Healthcare and Coventry Healthcare.
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