October 10, 2016, ROCHESTER, Minn. — Mayo Clinic recently was added to Wal-Mart’s Centers of Excellence network for spine care. Wal-Mart associates will receive a benefit that provides them with access to high-quality, cost-effective care from Mayo Clinic providers — experts in treating complex and rare conditions, including spine problems.
Wal-Mart’s Center of Excellence program provides associates enrolled in the benefits program access to Mayo Clinic and covers the full costs of care, including surgery. The program also covers the costs of travel, lodging and expenses for the patient and a caregiver. Spine care will be available at Mayo Clinic’s campuses in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota.
“We are pleased to be part of this innovative program for Wal-Mart’s associates,” says Charles Rosen, M.D., medical director, Contracting and Payer Relations and transplant surgeon at Mayo Clinic. “We want to provide the best possible care for patients with complex conditions by working closely with employers such as Wal-Mart. This program will expand access to Mayo Clinic and enable patients to benefit from Mayo Clinic expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of spine problems.”
“Our associates are very important to us, and we want them to receive the right care at the right time,” says Sally Welborn, senior vice president of global benefits at Wal-Mart. “Research, as well as our own internal data, shows about 30 percent of the spinal procedures done today are unnecessary. By utilizing the Centers of Excellence program, we make sure that our associates and their family members are diagnosed correctly, and that they get the best possible treatment.”
This is the latest agreement between Mayo Clinic and Wal-Mart. In 1997, the two organizations began a program for transplant operations and, in 2015, added benefits for breast, lung and colorectal cancers. The new spine care benefit will begin on Jan. 1, 2017.
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