Aspen-based Valley Health Alliance (VHA) is a coalition of the five largest employers--all self-insured--in Pitkin County. Together, they insure more than 4,000 local workers. The five organizations-- Aspen School District, Aspen Skiing Company, Aspen Valley Hospital, City of Aspen and Pitkin County--decided to join forces to improve health care in the area. VHA formally launched in 2015 with the goal of working to advance affordable and accessible health care in service of the Triple Aim. They’ve enlisted the help of doctors, hospitals, and other health professionals to help bring down costs while improving access across the community.
Seventy-five percent of the VHA population doesn’t have a primary care physician or attend annual well visits. The behavioral health piece is especially significant: Pitkin County’s suicide rate is four times the national average. So VHA is working hard to develop a strong foundation for behavioral health access.
Vision: The vision of Valley Health Alliance is to use what we learn to help create the healthiest community in the nation.
Mission: The mission of Valley Health Alliance is to achieve the Triple Aim:
History: The five Valley Health Alliance employers came together to discuss their common interest in reducing the rapidly increasing cost of health care
These organizations have committed time, money and resources to conduct a pilot study to learn the most effective ways to control costs and support quality, sustainable health care in the Valley. The target population of this pilot study is the 4,300 individuals covered by the five employers’ health benefits.
“It’s about building strategic relationships," said Kathleen Killion, MBA, VHA's executive director. "Such alliances continue to foster transformation and innovation in the state. We can position Colorado as having its act together relative to transformational health care services. I want VHA to be part of that.
“We want cross fertilization and the opportunity to share mutual experiences and models. It means being transparent about what’s happening in Pitkin County while also learning what’s working within Prime’s constituency. It’s important for us to share best practices and the mistakes we’ve made--successes and failures. This not only provides a tremendous learning opportunity, it also helps us avoid redundant services.”