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CONTRACT FOR MINORITY TRAINING PROGRAM AWARDED TO GROUP HEALTH FOUNDATION; PROGRAM AIMS TO INCREASE NUMBER OF MINORITIES IN HMO MANAGEMENT

 CONTRACT FOR MINORITY TRAINING PROGRAM AWARDED
 TO GROUP HEALTH FOUNDATION; PROGRAM AIMS TO INCREASE NUMBER
 OF MINORITIES IN HMO MANAGEMENT
 WASHINGTON, Oct. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- The Health Resources and


Services Administration of the U.S. Public Health Service has awarded a $100,000 contract to the Group Health Foundation to develop a pilot project to train minorities for management level positions in Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) and other managed care organizations.
 The Group Health Foundation is the non-profit educational arm of the Group Health Association of America (GHAA), the largest national organization representing HMOs and similar managed care systems.
 In announcing the pilot project, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Louis W. Sullivan, M.D., pointed out that currently less than 10 percent of HMO managers are minorities. "This new initiative breaks important ground," Sullivan said. "Both the public and private sectors are placing renewed importance on the role of managed care organizations in providing health care. These organizations must be prepared to deliver that care to a culturally diverse population, whose numbers are increasing."
 James F. Doherty, trustee of the Group Health Foundation and president and CEO of GHAA, also noted that the training program responds to needs created by the expanded use of managed care systems. In addition, Doherty observed, "The new minority training program demonstrates the commitment of HMOs to employing minorities in responsible management positions with unlimited career opportunities."
 The minority training program will combine on-the-job experience with academics, drawing upon the resources of HMOs in the Baltimore- Washington area and The Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health.
 During the one-year training program fellows will rotate through three or four HMO job placements designed to provide both broad exposure to all operations and match the individuals' interests -- such as health services delivery, strategic planning or finance. Additionally, fellows will participate in classroom study of basic management skills, the health care system generally and HMO operations.
 Most large HMOs in the Baltimore-Washington area have already agreed to offer rotation placements to fellows. These plans include: Group Health association, Kaiser Permanente of the Mid-Atlantic States, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of the National Capital Area and its CapitalCare HMO, George Washington University Health Plan, D.C. Chartered Health Plan, HealthPlus, Columbia Medical Plan, Columbia- Freestate Health Systems and Prudential Health Care Plan of the Mid- Atlantic. The final goal of the project is to place graduates in permanent positions. It is anticipated that permanent positions may evolve from these rotations.
 Organizations outside the Baltimore-Washington area also have exhibited a keen interest in the program. Both Comprehensive Health Services, Inc. (Detroit) and Marion Merrell Dow are contributing to the project. Comprehensive Health Services CEO Ellis J. Bonner observed, "I feel strongly that we have a responsibility to train minorities for management positions in HMOs. I've tried to be the conscience of the industry on this issue, and am delighted to see the project become a reality. I plan to continue my active support on its behalf."
 Work will begin on the program Nov. 1, 1992, when Janis Nero Phillips assumes the position of director, Minority Training Program. Nero Phillips currently is director of GHAA's Medical Affairs Department.
 While minority applicants will be recruited nationally, it is expected that most fellows will be from the Baltimore-Washington area. Bachelor's level training, a commitment to the health care field and managerial potential will be among the criteria for selection. Fellows will typically be under age 30, recent college graduates or persons working in the health field, including HMOs.
 Currently, the Group Health Foundation projects that 12 fellows will enter in the first operational year and 20 in each of the three subsequent years. Each would receive a stipend. It is anticipated that the first group of fellows will enter the program in January or February 1994, with subsequent groups entering in September, starting in September 1994.
 The Group Health Foundation and the Group Health Association of America have a commitment to providing training for professionals in the managed care field. GHAA provides 25 educational conferences each year. GHAA also co-sponsors with the American Nurses Association managed care training programs for nurses and serves in an advisory capacity for an executive training program, both at the University of Missouri at Kansas City, National Center for Managed Health Care Administration.
 -0- 10/27/92
 /CONTACT: Susan Pisano of the Group Health Association of America, 202-778-3245/ CO: Group Health Association of America; Group Health Foundation ST: District of Columbia IN: HEA SU:


DC -- DC021 -- 5523 10/27/92 14:36 EST
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Date:Oct 27, 1992
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