Mercy - Cedar Rapids and UI Health Care

Mercy — Cedar Rapids/University of Iowa Health Care
Medicare Shared Savings Program

Beginning July 2012, Mercy — Cedar Rapids and University of Iowa Health Care have participated in an Accountable Care Organization, a multifaceted new program sponsored by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. This joint venture is called Mercy-CR/UI Health Care ACO and provides Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries with high-quality service and care, while reducing the growth in Medicare expenditures through enhanced care coordination.

The service area covers Linn, Johnson, Benton, Cedar, Iowa, Jones, Keokuk, Louisa, Muscatine and Washington counties in Iowa. The program is designed for increasing quality for patients and collaboration with its partners. Working together, these providers can improve the health of individuals and communities by:

  • delivering a more patient-centered experience through enhanced care coordination and integration, such as shared electronic health records
  • provide patients with a broader, more comprehensive range of health care services
  • improve access, screening and preventive care

Learn more about our Medical Home.


1337 John Colloton Pavilion; Iowa City, Iowa 52242

Primary contact

Christine Miller

ACO participants

The ACO is comprised of a joint venture arrangement between University of Iowa Health Care and Mercy — Cedar Rapids. The participants are:

  • University of Iowa Health Care: University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics; University of Iowa Physicians; University of Iowa Community Medical Services, Inc.
  • MercyCare Service Corporation: Mercy Medical Center (Mercy – Cedar Rapids); MercyCare Management, Inc.; Mercy Physician Associates, Inc. Governing body:  Carol Fethke, PhD, Voting Manager ● Kenneth Kates, Voting Manager and Chair, University of Iowa Health Care ● Richard LeBlond, MD, Voting Manager, University of Iowa Health Care ● Timothy Quinn, MD, Voting Manager, MercyCare Service Corporation ● Michael Trachta, Voting Manager and Vice Chair, MercyCare Service Corporation   (NOTE: All are ACO participants with the exception of Dr. Fethke, who is a Medicare beneficiary.)

Medical leadership 

Timothy Quinn, MD, Executive Medical Director  ● Christine Miller, MBA, ACO Administrator  ● Debbie Thoman, BA, BS, MA, RHIA, CHP, Chief Compliance Officer  ● Craig Syrop, MD, Chair, Provider Executive Committee ● Christine Miller, MBA, Chair, Operations Committee ● Lee Carmen, Chair, Data Management and IT Committee ● Laura Reed, RN, Chair, Care Coordination Committee ● Matt Fox, MD, Chair, Quality Committee

Amount of shared savings or losses

To be determined

How shared savings are distributed

Reinvested into ACO - 50% ● Shared with Providers - 25% ● Shared with University of Iowa Health System and MercyCare Service Corporation - 25%

This information was last updated April 2013

How ACOs work

  • Local health care providers and hospitals volunteer to work together to provide better coordinated care. Members are keenly focused on improving quality, providing greater value and slowing the increase in health care costs.
  • Physicians, and others who provide patient care, will partner with the patient in making health care decisions.
  • The patient is in the center of care, and providers will be better able to keep them informed, and to keep listening and honoring patient choices.
  • With a goal of better coordinated care, patient medical history and test information are shared between providers.
  • Unlike HMOs, managed care, or some insurance plans, an ACO can't tell patients which health care providers to see and can't change their Medicare benefits.

How ACOs share information

  • Physicians use data from Medicare to help improve how they provide care. The goal is to provide the right care at the right time in the right setting. For example, physicians will obtain patient medical information from Medicare to help them to know medical history including patient medical conditions, prescriptions and visit history.
  • The privacy and security of patient medical information is protected by federal law. Patients inside an ACO continue to enjoy the same rights by all those covered by Medicare.

University of Iowa Health Alliance

755 59th Place West Des Moines, IA 50266