Identifying and Equipping Change Agents to Power a Quality Improvement Flywheel in a Clinically Integrated Network Model


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As a statewide clinically integrated network, the 6,100+ provider members that comprise the Vanderbilt Health Affiliated Network (VHAN) are accountable to continuously improving their performance on quality measures and patient outcomes. Even with a network the size, scale and composition of VHAN, it is clear that there are high-functioning care teams that are constantly rising to new challenges and delivering consistent performance. It is less clear, however, what the characteristics are of these successful care teams and how best to leverage them to ignite a higher level of performance among their network peers.

This study looked at payor data to identify practices and providers who meet and exceed quality measures tied to value-based contracts. From there, qualitative research was conducted through personal interviews with select high performers and their internal VHAN staff partners. Additional qualitative research included reviewing documented performance improvement processes and data from existing case studies. Data collected led to the identification of common characteristics of high-functioning care teams. High performers can be identified by their change agent attributes, which include their willing to take risk today to improve tomorrow and their commitment to cultivating a team-based environment that improves and transforms care delivery. The study looks at the specific ways in which these teams have evolved and adapted to become the high performers they are today, including challenges they have overcome and foresee in the future. The conclusion addresses opportunities for VHAN to better support and empower these ambassadors of change to drive population health initiatives across the state, aligning their goals and interests to those of the broader network.



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