Walmart is pioneering a new model of health care for its associates, and is partnering with Mercy Hospital Springfield and five other hospitals in the country as it announces its new “Centers of Excellence.”
The Centers of Excellence program offers no-cost heart, spine and transplant surgeries for Walmart’s associates and their covered dependents enrolled in the company’s medical plans. In addition, Walmart will pay for travel, lodging and food for the patient and a caregiver.
Mercy Hospital Springfield has been chosen to provide spine care for Walmart associates. It joins two other facilities, Scott and White in Texas and Virginia Mason in Washington state. Mercy Hospital Springfield will treat Walmart associates who live in the Midwest and eastern United States. Walmart has also announced Centers of Excellence for heart surgeries and transplants. Other Centers of Excellence are the Cleveland Clinic, Geisinger Medical Center and the Mayo Clinic.
“We devoted extensive time developing Centers of Excellence and have identified six renowned hospitals that meet the highest quality standards for heart, spine and transplant surgery,” said Sally Welborn, senior vice president of global benefits at Walmart. “Through these hospitals, our associates will have far less out-of-pocket expenses and a greater peace of mind knowing they are receiving exceptional care from a facility that specializes in the procedure they require. This is the first time a retailer has offered a comprehensive, nationwide program for heart, spine and transplant surgery.”
Mercy will be providing procedures like cervical and lumbar spinal fusion, total disk arthroplasty, spine surgery revisions and other complex spine procedures.
“We were chosen based on three factors: ethics, quality and value,” said Dr. Alan Scarrow, president of Mercy Clinic Springfield. “Ethics means we do the right things that will help our patients achieve the best outcome. Quality is achieved by tracking patient outcomes to know exactly how they are improving and value is delivering that quality at the right price.”
The spine team at Mercy Hospital Springfield consists of five neurosurgeons, two orthopedic spine specialists, four pain management doctors and two spine psychiatrists. Through the Centers of Excellence program, hospitals will collaborate on best practices to ensure they are continually increasing their standards of care.
“Mercy Hospital Springfield is pleased to be named a Walmart Center of Excellence,” said Jon Swope, president and CEO of Mercy Springfield Communities. “It affirms our commitment to getting health care right, as we focus on compassionate care and exceptional service.”