Catalyst for Payment Reform

Centers of Excellence: Walmart Inc.

Centers of Excellence: Walmart Inc.

How did Walmart, Inc. find out that 50% of spinal surgeries were unnecessary?


Learn about the centers of excellence for spine surgery program Walmart, Inc. implemented to address tremendous variation in quality of care and inappropriate care.  Written exclusively to help purchasers learn from one another and spread best practices, this case study covers:

  • The problem with variation in high-cost procedures
  • Designing the COE strategy and finding the right partners
  • Rolling out the model with a heavy focus on employee communications
  • Results and key insights for other employers
  • What’s next for Walmart’s program?

CPR conducted interviews with the Walmart health care team, Aetna, Health Design Plus, and Virginia Mason Medical Center to inform the story.

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Type: Case Study



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