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PREMIER PREFERRED CARE LAUNCHES PROVIDER NETWORK WITH 21 HOSPITALS - 3,000 DOCTORS; MASSACHUSETTS MUTUAL BECOMES FIRST CLIENT

 NEW YORK, Sept. 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Premier Preferred Care has launched a major new hospital-owned, preferred provider organization (PPO) to provide healthcare services to people living in the New York/ New Jersey metropolitan area, Thomas Schember and Evan Polansky, the managing executive directors in New Jersey and New York, respectively, announced today.
 In addition, Massachusetts Mutual Insurance Company, a leading health insurer of about 270,000 individuals in the metropolitan area, has designated Premier Preferred Care as its preferred provider network for its clients in New Jersey, according to Mr. Schember.
 Premier Preferred Care has initially contracted with 14 leading hospitals in New Jersey and seven in New York as part of its regional healthcare network. It has also enrolled 3,000 doctors in this area; of these, 35 percent are primary care physicians. It expects to add numerous hospitals and doctors to the network by the end of the year, and expand soon to include hospitals and doctors in parts of Connecticut and Pennsylvania that lie within the metropolitan region.
 "The sponsorship of these quality hospitals and the participation of their affiliated physicians sets our network apart in the marketplace," Mr. Schember asserted. "Hospitals in the network are among the nation's leading healthcare providers. Many hospitals will be offering the network to their employees to better serve those employees and their families who may not live close to the institution where they work."
 Choice of Hospital and Doctor
 This means that an individual who lives and works anywhere within the metropolitan area and enrolls in Premier Preferred Care would be able to access first-rate hospitals and physicians convenient to either work or home. "Many doctors who have never before been involved in managed care have contracted with us," Mr. Polansky said.
 Network Hospitals
 New York hospitals are Beth Israel Medical Center (New York), the Long Island College Hospital (Brooklyn), Long Island Jewish Medical Center (New Hyde Park), Maimonides Medical Center (Brooklyn), Montefiore Medical Center (Bronx), the Mount Sinai Medical Center (New York) and Staten Island University Hospital (Staten Island).
 New Jersey members are Barnert Hospital (Paterson), Beth Israel Hospital (Passaic), Christ Hospital (Jersey City), East Orange General Hospital (East Orange), Englewood Hospital and Medical Center (Englewood), Hamilton Hospital (Hamilton), JFK Medical Center (Edison), Monmouth Medical Center (Long Branch), the Mountainside Hospital (Montclair), Newark Beth Israel Medical Center (Newark), Somerset Medical Center (Somerville), St. Elizabeth Hospital (Elizabeth), the Valley Hospital (Ridgewood) and West Hudson Hospital (Kearny).
 Preferred Provider Organization Benefits
 Premier Preferred Care does not impose rigid limitations on provider access, benefit design or financial arrangement; it is neither an HMO nor an insurance provider. Rather, it offers its quality provider network of doctors and hospitals to self-insured businesses, insurance carriers and independent claims payment organizations (TPAs).
 Among benefits to the employer are no restrictions on plan design or administration, according to Mr. Schember and Mr. Polansky. Employers have the freedom and flexibility to tailor their healthcare plan specifically to the needs of their organizations.
 "Employers can also take pride in offering their workers access to quality providers at a significant savings," Mr. Schember said. "We have been able to negotiate favorable discounts, often as high as 30 percent less than the usual indemnity rates. We plan to provide the employer quality assessment and outcome measurement."
 "Premier Preferred Care is ideally suited to take on the mantle of the new healthcare system being proposed by the White House," Mr. Polansky said. "It is clear that the United States is moving in the direction of integrated provider-sponsored managed care organizations. By virtue of its design, quality, accessibility and affordability, our network is positioned to serve the varieties of managed care which are expected eventually to be written into law."
 Premier Preferred Care is affiliated with Premier Health Alliance, Inc., of Westchester, Ill., a national alliance owned by 51 leading hospitals, systems and networks, and representing an additional 130 community and specialty hospitals nationwide.
 -0- 9/29/93
 /CONTACT: Thomas Schember, 908-205-0100, or Evan Polansky, 212-697-2828, both of Premier Preferred Care; or Norma Rothenberg or Jerry Miller of the Financial Relations Board, 212-661-8030/


CO: Premier Preferred Care ST: New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts IN: HEA SU: PDT

GK-SH -- NY029 -- 6784 09/29/93 11:38 EDT
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Date:Sep 29, 1993
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