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Provider Consolidation into Vertically Integrated Health systems Increased From 2016 to 2018

An article in the August edition of Health Affairs writes of provider consolidation into vertically integrated health systems having increased from 2016 to 2018. More than half of US physicians and 72 percent of hospitals were affiliated with one of 637 health systems in 2018. For-profit and church-operated systems had the largest increases in system size, driven in part by a large number of system mergers and acquisitions.

Data on health systems and system hospitals came from the 2016 and 2018 versions of AHRQ’s Compendium of US Health Systems. The compendium is a publicly available database with information on health systems operating in the United States, including system size, ownership type, and linkages to system hospitals. Researchers identified system-affiliated physicians, including primary care physicians, using extracts from the 2016 IMS Healthcare Organization Services and 2018 IQVIA OneKey databases.

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