Walmart enlists Emory Healthcare as care plan, joint replacement provider — 8 insights

Walmart added Atlanta-based Emory Healthcare to its Centers of Excellence network and selected the system as an Accountable Care Plan provider for its metro-Atlanta associates.

Here are eight insights.

1. The ACP and COE took effect Jan. 1.

2. Walmart associates at 55 Walmart, Sam's Club and Walmart Distribution center stores in metropolitan Atlanta can choose the Emory Accountable Care Plan as their primary healthcare plan.

3. The Emory ACP offers Walmart associates access to more than 2,000 local physicians in the Emory Healthcare Network. The associates pay standard co-pays for primary care, specialists and urgent care visits. Preventive visits are free.

4. Tucker, Ga.-based Emory University Orthopaedics & Spine Hospital and Emory Orthopaedics & Spine Center in Atlanta joined Walmart’s national spine surgery and joint replacement surgery Centers of Excellence programs.

Emory's membership in the Centers of Excellence network provides access to the health system's spine and joint services and specialists for Walmart employees at certain locations.

5. Providers in Walmart's Centers of Excellence program accept a fixed bundled payment for certain services, such as clinical evaluations and surgical procedures.

6. Walmart-sponsored plan enrollees who undergo certain spine and joint replacement procedures at EUOSH or Emory Orthopaedics & Spine Center won't pay out-of-pocket for the services. Walmart will cover travel-related costs to Emory.

7. Emory ACP enrollees can also access select weight loss and cardiac surgeries at Emory through the COE program.

8. "Walmart's decision recognizes that having a group of physicians, nurses and staff dedicated solely to joint replacement and spine surgery translates directly into better outcomes for their employees and families," said Scott Boden, MD, Emory Orthopaedics & Spine Center director and Emory Healthcare Network chairman. "When you have people and a facility that focus on performing just one or two areas of surgery, it allows you to achieve efficiencies and results that are difficult to achieve in a conventional hospital setting."

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Drs. Robert DeMaagd, Thomas Matelic perform outpatient joint replacement at Metro Health OAM Surgery Center

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