Health Care Reform

HHS Announces Health Care Innovation Awards in Illinois

Providers, tech companies, and local organizations expected to lower costs, improve quality nationwide

Washington, DC–(ENEWSPF)–June 15, 2012.  Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today announced that innovative programs in Illinois are recipients of the second batch of Health Care Innovation Awards, among 81 new awards released nationwide.

Made possible by the health care law – the Affordable Care Act – the awards will support projects nationwide that are designed to deliver high quality medical care, enhance the health care workforce, and save money. Combined with the awards announced last month, HHS has now made awards to 107 projects that intend to save the health care system an estimated $1.9 billion over the next three years.

“Thanks to the health care law, we are giving people in local communities the resources they need to make our health care system stronger,” said Secretary Sebelius.

The awards are notable for their geographic diversity; projects will be located in urban and rural areas, all 50 States and the District of Columbia.  Projects in Illinois include:

  • The University of Chicago will receive $6.1 million to promote an ongoing doctor-patient relationship by providing consistent care to Medicare beneficiaries before, during, and after hospitalizations, using multidisciplinary teams led by comprehensive care physicians.  The project will target beneficiaries with a high probability of hospitalization, making it more likely that comprehensive care physicians will encounter their patients during hospital rounds. 
  • Imaging Advantage, LLC, a California company partnering with Vanguard Health Systems and other hospital systems in the Chicago area, and will receive $6 million to revamp hospital-based imaging services using technology to reduce the time patients in Illinois, and their physicians, must wait for imaging results.  The project also aims to reduce unnecessary imaging, and improve the accuracy of imaging interpretation as well as patient safety.
  • The Mount Sinai School of Medicine is receiving $12.7 million for to treat the increasing numbers of older adults who end up in hospital emergency rooms.  The project will integrate geriatric care with emergency room care, creating jobs for an array of newly trained providers, data analysts, research assistants, transitional care managers, and others in three large, urban hospitals in Illinois and two other states.
  • TransforMED is receiving $21 million to redesign primary care in Illinois and ten other states.   Patient-Centered Medical Homes, specialty practices, and hospitals will build “medical neighborhoods” with sophisticated analytics to identify high risk patients and coordinate care.   
  • The University of North Texas Health Science Center, in partnership with Brookdale Senior Living, is receiving $7.3 million to expand Brookdale Senior Living’s Transitions of Care Program for nursing home residents to independent living, assisted-living and dementia communities, and others.  At the end of three years, advanced practice nurses will be training care transition nurses in Illinois and 34 other states to lower avoidable hospital admissions rates for residents in senior living.  

Awardees were chosen for their innovative solutions to the health care challenges facing their communities and for their focus on creating a well-trained health care workforce that is equipped to meet the need for new jobs in the 21st century health system. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) contracted with an external organization with extensive experience in managing independent grant review processes to administer the award review process to ensure an objective review of each application.

The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation within CMS will administer the awards through cooperative agreements over three years.

For more information on the awards announced today, go to:

To learn more about other innovative models being tested by the Innovation Center, please visit: