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Permanente Physician Leaders Convene to Advance the Quadruple Aim in Health Care Delivery


Former Senator William Frist, Policy Experts Urge Physicians to Advocate for Higher Quality, Value-Based Care

Washington, DC – Physician leaders representing more than 21,000 Permanente Medical Group physicians gathered in Washington, DC, for an executive leadership summit focused on advancing the Quadruple Aim.

“As physicians, we are dedicated to delivering health care with humanity and truly fulfilling the promise of medicine,” said Geoffrey Sewell, MD, FACP, president and executive medical director, Hawaii Permanente Medical Group, and chair of the National Permanente Executive Committee, The Permanente Federation. “At this event, we were inspired by the many examples of how Permanente Medicine transforms the lives of our patients and produces the highest quality health scores in America. We are committed to sharing best practices and being an advocate for the well-being of all patients, supporting innovation and policy initiatives that expand access to affordable, high-quality care.”

The Quadruple Aim, as described in a 2014 Annals of Family Medicine article, expands upon the broadly accepted Triple Aim by adding the goal of improving the work life of health care providers to the original three aims of enhancing patient experience, improving population health, and reducing costs. During the Washington, DC, event, the Permanente Medical Groups launched a new program called “Self Care,” designed to further their pioneering work in creating an environment promoting physician resilience as an antidote to the national epidemic of burnout affecting U.S. physicians.

“Medicine is a noble profession, but in recent years it has also become one at seriously high risk for depression, burnout, and exhaustion,” said Edward Ellison, MD, executive medical director and chairman of the board for the Southern California Permanente Medical Group; chairman of the board and CEO, The Southeast Permanente Medical Group; and co-CEO, The Permanente Federation. “We are making progress in reversing this trend by creating a Permanente culture in which physicians are empowered to provide the best, highest quality of care while being supported in their own wellness, and by easing the administrative burdens that drain their energy. Physician wellness is essential to patient wellness and the wellness of our American health care system. That’s the Quadruple Aim.”

Successfully achieving the Quadruple Aim also requires physician leadership in policymaking.

“Most of the national dialogue has focused on health care coverage, when in fact we need to be looking just as intently at how health care delivery should be structured,” said Richard Isaacs, MD, FACS, executive director and CEO of The Permanente Medical Group; president and CEO, the Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group; and co-CEO, The Permanente Federation. “We believe that the integrated care model developed by the Permanente Medical Groups is the answer to what ails health care today.”

Keynote speaker former U.S. Senator and Majority Leader William Frist, MD, also addressed the importance of the physician voice to support expansion of value-based care models. A panel of policy experts echoed Dr. Frist’s advice for physicians to add their views and perspectives to the national debate on health care. Kavita Patel, MD, the Brookings Institution; Yvette Fontenot, Avenue Solutions; and Rodney Whitlock, ML Strategies; referenced the success of coordinated care models developed by the Permanente Medical Groups as solutions that should be brought to the forefront of discussions on health care delivery.

Other presentations shared accomplishments in achieving outstanding clinical outcomes through predictive analytics, coordinated care, telehealth, and the rapid application of new research to patient care.

About the Permanente Medical Groups

The Permanente Medical Groups are composed of more than 21,000 physicians dedicated to the mission of improving the health of our patients and the communities in which we provide care. We practice in eight self-governed, physician-led, prepaid, multispecialty medical groups. Together with the Kaiser Foundation Health Plans and Kaiser Foundation Hospitals, we are Kaiser Permanente – an award-winning health care system that delivers Permanente Medicine to more than 11.8 million Kaiser Permanente members. We work collaboratively, enabled by state-of-the-art facilities and technology, to provide preventive and world-class complex care in eight states – from Hawaii to Maryland – and the District of Columbia.

About The Permanente Federation

In 1997, the Permanente Medical Groups formed The Permanente Federation LLC to represent their shared interests. The Federation serves as the key partner on behalf of the medical groups with Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Kaiser Foundation Hospitals on national initiatives.

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