Former leaders of the National IPA Coalition (NIPAC) have officially endorsed the American Medical Group Association (AMGA) as the best resource for IPAs and integrated delivery systems throughout the country. AMGA announced that it is collaborating with former board members of NIPAC to transition membership, and AMGA has purchased certain limited assets of the now defunct organization, which ceased operations in October 2001. IPA stands for Independent Practice Association.

"We view this expansion as a very natural and logical transition for our association," said Donald W. Fisher, Ph.D., CAE, AMGA's President and Chief Executive Officer. "For more than half a century, AMGA has helped a variety of integrated delivery systems within our membership continue their focus on patient-centered care--many of our current and former members are IPAs, and we are delighted to welcome these new organizations with similar visions and philosophies into our membership. We realize the incredible financial challenges IPAs face today, and our association has the resources to help them succeed."

AMGA reports that this transaction is neither a merger nor an acquisition between the two organizations. Rather, AMGA has developed a transition plan for former NIPAC members to become members of AMGA without prohibitive financial burden. AMGA purchased the rights to certain NIPAC publications and other specified assets. In addition, AMGA has stepped up its already robust political advocacy on behalf of IPA members.

"NIPAC conducted extensive due diligence and we believe our decision is the best one for our mutual members," said John Jenrette, M.D., former Chair of the NIPAC Board of Directors and Chief Medical Officer of Sharp Community Medical Group. "AMGA shares our commitment to physician-led health care and is the nation's leading advocate for physician-led health care systems with an extensive network on Capitol Hill. We feel strongly that AMGA is the organization best positioned to lead physician-directed health care systems into the future. I strongly encourage other IPAs to join AMGA to strengthen the voice for IPAs nationally. Participation is the key to success."

AMGA is an association representing medical groups and IPAs, including some of the nation's largest integrated health care delivery systems. AMGA's mission is to shape the health care environment by advancing high quality, cost-effective, patient-centered, and physician-directed health care. The members of AMGA deliver health care to more than 50 million patients in 40 states, including 15 million capitated lives. The average AMGA member group has 186 physicians and 12 satellite locations. Headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia, AMGA is the strategic partner for medical groups providing a comprehensive package of benefits, including political advocacy, educational and networking programs and publications, benchmarking data services, and financial and operations assistance.