Our Health Model

Access Health is a non-profit community-sponsored multi-share program, offering health coverage for uninsured low-income individuals and their families since 1999. As a community based organization designed to meet the same triple aims embraced by Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) we offer a bottom-up rather than top-down approach that allows our model to respond to our unique community needs.

Although the ACO model is a relatively new one introduced by the Affordable Care Act, Access Health has been working to meet the same goals since 2003, demonstrating success with real world results:

  • Improved health quality
  • Improved healthcare delivery
  • Lower health costs

Since 1999 the cost of coverage through Access Health has increased less than 1% per year. Our Continuous Health Improvement (CHI) process identifies and manages health risks among members who are incentivized to engage in health improvement and health education. This program helps individuals reach realistic goals toward improved health, which results in lower costs. In addition, our multi-share financing arrangement combines resources from community stakeholders with a vested interest in community health – including hospitals, businesses, and members – to sustain coverage affordability.

Access Health has demonstrated how a multi-share community-styled Accountable Care Organization can succeed, and serves as an example for other communities and policy makers seeking sustainable solutions to the persistent health policy problem of affordability.

What is a Community-Sponsored Multi-Share?

Simply described, community-sponsored multi-share can be characterized as highly coordinated care among providers, hospitals, and other care organizations, integrated with community resources to meet the triple aims of better care, better health, and lower cost.

The Access Health community-based multi-share model has been evolving since 1999. Through the C3 Health Plan for health coverage, Access Health fosters:

  • An integrated provider delivery system
  • Collaboration of community health and financial resources
  • Transparency of data and technology systems
  • Enhanced population health management

This has resulted in consistently affordable, high quality care to eligible uninsured individuals and their families in the Greater Muskegon area.

Replication of Access Health’s Community Multi-share Model

Access Health encourages replication of its successful model. In recent years, several communities have attempted to replicate the Access Health C3 program, though few communities have succeeded. While changes in healthcare stemming from the Affordable Care Act played a large part in the demise of similar programs, the failure to implement a population health improvement program ensured they could not survive as affordable minimum essential coverage for uninsured.

To ensure affordable coverage, Access Health developed its unique program of population health management, the Continuous Health Improvement (CHI) program. The CHI program identifies risks and targets the appropriate resources to manage these risks. Health risk management through CHI -- integrated with technology, community resources, and providers -- is the key to achieving the triple aims shared by both the multi-share model and ACOs. The CHI process integrates all health data with care management systems and engages members to make behavioral changes and achieve a healthy lifestyle. Unhealthy behaviors are the primary cost drivers and quality of life determinants for healthcare today. The community sponsored multi-share model allows communities to drive behavioral change from the bottom up, empowering communities to be healthier.