Florida-based Hope Healthcare has affiliated with Chapters Health System, a nonprofit provider of hospice, palliative care and home health, among other services.
Combined with its affiliates, Chapters Health is the largest nonprofit hospice provider in the nation and the sixth overall. Its staff of 3,330 and more than 2,430 volunteers care for more than 72,000 patients annually in 35 Florida counties and four in Georgia.
The affiliation will bolster both organizations’ positions as they work to meet rising demand amid a range of pressures bearing down on providers, according to Hope Healthcare President and CEO Samira Beckwith and Chapters President and CEO Andrew Molosky.
“As home and community-based medicine continues to garner steam in the national landscape, the ability for organizations like Chapters Health System and Hope Healthcare to continue being front and center in redesigning end-of-life care is paramount,” the two leaders told Hospice News in a joint email. “Increasing financial, societal and regulatory headwinds are increasingly pervasive and two organizations who share common cultures, vision and values coming together creates the strength necessary to persevere in spite of all of these factors.”
Following the affiliation, Beckwith is transitioning to a new role within Chapters to focus on policy, advocacy and advancing industry thought leadership.
This marks the second affiliation for Chapters in 2022, the first being Cornerstone early in the year. The organization’s other affiliated hospice and palliative care brands include Chapters Health Palliative Care, Good Shepherd Hospice, Hospice of Okeechobee, HPH Hospice and LifePath Hospice.
Fueling the expansion are two affiliation-building strategies that Chapters introduced in 2020, the Chapter Health Managed Service Organization (MSO) program and Chapters CareNu.
The two programs are designed to support legacy nonprofits seeking to better position themselves to compete with larger companies that often have more capital at their disposal. The MSO program is oriented around hospices, whereas CareNu is designed for those who provide upstream services.
“It is through these types of forward-thinking actions that the nonprofit mission Hope and Chapters Health are committed to will be able to not only survive but thrive moving forward,” Beckwith and Molosky said in the email.
Beckwith led Hope Healthcare for more than 30 years. During her tenure, the organization grew from a hospice caring for fewer than 100 patients a day to a comprehensive, community-based health care system with a daily census that exceeds 4,000 patients.
The organization provides hospice, palliative care, PACE and pediatric services, as well as disease-specific programs and patient support for social determinants of health.
Hope is also among the nonprofit hospice providers that established Advanced Illness Partners (AIP), a joint enterprise designed for participation in the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) direct contracting program. AIP will transition to the ACO Realizing Equity, Access, and Community Health (REACH) model when it replaces direct contracting in 2023.
The two providers’ home state of Florida is a large market for hospice providers due to the size of its senior population.
Seniors are projected to represent nearly a third, or 32.5%, of the state’s overall population by 2030, up from about 25% currently, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
Hospice utilization also runs high in Florida, with about 155,000 patients electing the benefit in 2021, according to CMS. Only California exceeded that number at 156,000.
Hope Healthcare will not rebrand post-affiliation.
“This latest affiliation is further evidence of the strength of Chapters Health’s unrivaled model representing an elevation in not-for-profit, chronic illness care,” Molosky said in a statement. “The ability to gain economy of scale, intellectual capital and best practice while preserving brand legacy, board governance and executive presence is the future.”