TMC thanks UnitedHealthcare, presenting sponsor of 2016 Girls on the Run 5K

gotrSince 2010, hundreds of girls across Tucson in third through eighth grade have been inspired by Girls on the Run, a unique youth-development program that teaches life skills and builds confidence.

Culminating in a 5K run, to be held on Saturday, Oct. 29, the goal of the program is to unleash a sense of accomplishment while establishing a lifetime appreciation of health and fitness.

Tucson Medical Center is proud to welcome UnitedHealthcare as the presenting sponsor of the event, which will draw more than 200 girls from 17 elementary and middle schools to the downtown Tucson course.

“These are key years for girls as they begin to be more concerned about peer opinions and perceived social expectations about appearance,” said Julia Strange, TMC vice president of community benefit. “UnitedHealthcare’s focus on health and wellness makes it an ideal partner in helping us empower girls to develop healthy habits and foster pride in their accomplishments.”

“UnitedHealthcare is grateful for the opportunity to be the presenting sponsor of this year’s Girls on the Run and 5K race, which will help young girls live healthier lives and learn how to become strong, independent and confident women,” said David Allazetta of UnitedHealthcare.

In addition to having a new presenting sponsor, the race also has a new location. Girls on the Run will be included in the 2016 TMC Get Moving Tucson weekend, taking place in downtown Tucson and starting on Church Street immediately north of Congress.

The day will kick off at 7:30 a.m. with the Tucson Lifestyle 5K Run/Walk for all ages, followed by the Girls on the Run 5K at 8:30 a.m. and the 9:30 a.m. Cox Charities Fit Kids One Mile for children under 12.

The following day, the TMC A-Mountain Half-Marathon – the final event of the 2016 Gabe Zimmerman Triple Crown – begins at 7 a.m.

“This new format lets girls experience a much broader wellness event in which people are there to support each other and build a stronger Tucson,” said Mary Atkinson, TMC’s director of wellness.

“There’s really nothing like the buzz of race day, and I’m thrilled the community will be there to cheer for these girls as they pursue their goals.”

Proceeds from the TMC Get Moving Tucson Weekend will fund local charities, including Cox Charities, Team Hoyt Arizona, Reid Park Zoo, Child and Family Resources, and the Southern Arizona Roadrunners.

UnitedHealthcare patients in southern Arizona to benefit from improved care coordination and enhanced health services through AzCC

People enrolled in UnitedHealthcare employer-sponsored benefit plans now have access to Arizona Connected Care (AzCC), a physician-led, patient-centric accountable care organization (ACO) that manages all aspects of patient health care, ensuring that the proper course of treatment and preventive health measures are being followed. The AzCC ACO combines advanced analytics to measure and improve quality outcomes for patients with innovative, value-based performance incentives.

During the past year, AzCC has been providing its prevention- and wellness-focused health care to seniors enrolled in UnitedHealthcare’s Medicare Advantage plans. This new, expanded collaboration will give more than 180,000 people enrolled in UnitedHealthcare’s employer-sponsored health benefit plans throughout southern Arizona the opportunity to benefit from access to quality care from approximately 200 AzCC care providers and health professionals through this distinctive care model.

AzCC, composed of primary care physicians, specialists, Tucson Medical Center, and other health care providers, in 2012 became the first ACO qualified by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in southern Arizona. Since then AzCC has provided care to thousands of patients while practicing the Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s (IHI’s) “Triple Aim” objective: increase patient satisfaction, improve the health of the population and reduce the cost of health care.

“We are delighted to expand our partnership with UnitedHealthcare so that thousands of additional UnitedHealthcare patients in Southern Arizona can receive the distinctive care that an ACO can provide,” said John Friend, executive director, Arizona Connected Care. “We believe this program will clearly demonstrate that proactive care focused on wellness and chronic disease management actually reduces health care costs.”

UnitedHealthcare plan participants who use an AzCC care provider do not have to do anything differently in order to receive the benefits of the ACO. Participating primary care physicians will receive monthly updates on their patients, enabling them to monitor all of the care each patient is receiving and access the patient’s care in one record.

For example, if a patient is being treated for heart disease, all the tests, screenings and medications the patient is receiving will be collected into one record to ensure that the appropriate course of care is occurring, the care is coordinated, and the patient is receiving any and all necessary services. This model will help manage services for patients with chronic conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease, while keeping the focus on health and well-being, increased patient safety and care delivery well supported by science.

“Arizona Connected Care is an important provider of health care services in southern Arizona, and we are pleased that more of our health plan customers now have access to AzCC’s innovative ACO care model that improves quality, streamlines care and reduces costs,” said Jeri Jones, CEO, UnitedHealthcare Employer & Individual of Arizona.

UnitedHealthcare is working with physician groups, hospitals and medical centers, and other health care delivery organizations across the country to achieve IHI’s “Triple Aim” objective. UnitedHealthcare’s value-based payment capabilities are designed to support this transformation of care delivery. Today, more than $20 billion of UnitedHealthcare’s annual physician and hospital reimbursements is tied to accountable care programs, centers of excellence and performance-based programs.

Participating AzCC physicians are already using advanced tools and software applications from UnitedHealth Group’s Optum business, a partnership announced in 2011. These capabilities provide health information on patients, enabling their care providers to more easily collaborate with each other on health care decisions. This information will also help AzCC care providers better understand and identify best practices for overall patient wellness and disease management, leading to meaningful health improvements over time.

To read more on this topic, check out the recent article in the Arizona Daily Star.


Tucson Medical Center | 5301 E. Grant Road | Tucson, Arizona 85712 | (520) 327-5461