Duke and WakeMed Explore “Collaborating”

Duke and WakeMed Health System in Raleigh, N.C. are discussing collaborating in what is being described as a “virtual merger” by some. The incentives toward provider system aggregation have been present for quite awhile, health reform has increased these incentives, and any Medicaid reform that moves towards capitation and an attempt to shift risk away from the State toward insurers or delivery networks will will accelerate large providers acting on these incentives.

Around here, everything is eventually UNC v Duke, and this is no different.

As I wrote about three years ago:

From where I sit, the only real long run provider system question in this area is whether the Research Triangle becomes UNC v. Duke only, or whether WakeMed is able to survive, thrive and grow to make it a three-way competition? How these sorts of questions play out in many local markets nationally will have a great impact on the health care system in the future.

About Don Taylor
Professor of Public Policy at Duke University (with appointments in Business, Nursing, Community and Family Medicine, and the Duke Clinical Research Institute). I am one of the founding faculty of the Margolis Center for Health Policy, and currently serve as Chair of Duke's University Priorities Committee (UPC). My research focuses on improving care for persons who are dying, and I am co-PI of a CMMI award in Community Based Palliative Care. I teach both undergrads and grad students at Duke. On twitter @donaldhtaylorjr

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