50 Innovative Companies to Watch 2016

Established with an ultimate aim of providing a successful “transition” for every patient (family & caregiver), while creating a financial and strategic differentiator for the health systems we aim to serve worldwide: Patient Engagement Advisors (PEA)


“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” – Steve Jobs

Founded in 2008, Patient Engagement Advisors, LLC (PEA) provides transition of care, outpatient development and industrial and business health services for large integrated health care systems nationally that desire to extend their commitment of care for patients, employees, employers and consumers.

How the journey of PEA began Patient Engagement Advisors’ journey started as the result of a research project conducted by Cleveland Clinic. The study focused on the principle that individuals (patients) need to play an increased role in their health and health care decision-making in order to achieve optimal benefits. The argument that healthcare providers could provide “perfect care” could be derailed by the patient not following the physician or clinical care team directions (adhering to medications, maintaining the right diet, or seeking follow up care). This hypothesis has fueled healthcare reform topics around the need for improved ‘transitions’ of patients.

From hospital to home, home to clinic, clinic to home, ensuring patients (families/caregivers) have their medications/clinical recommended products in their hands, have clinically prescribed nutrition readily available/mailed to their home, and all referrals (e.g. primary care visit) scheduled and booked. These are a few of the factors that lead to reducing falls and infections, improving mobility and healing, while reducing readmission rates upwards of 50%. PEA positively impacts continuity of care/quality objectives for patients, consumers, and employees (adherence/compliance), ensuring success as individuals’ transition.

PEA’s second principle centers on financial performance. Healthcare systems recognize they cannot save their way to prosperity. They need to prioritize developing growth strategies; maximizing the “Share of Care” and increasing discretionary spend from the consumers. PEA captures new sources of growth and margin that apply to the Fee for Service model (managing leakage), while establishing the infrastructure to be successful as the industry evolves to Value Based Care reimbursement. PEA aligns clinical recommendations (medications, nutrition, products, and services) with financial considerations, helping to capitalize on the shifting reimbursement model, while optimizing the growth in spend as healthcare consumerism takes hold.

The third principle is focused on the patient experience measured by standardized satisfaction ratings (HCAHPS), a part of the Value Base Purchasing reimbursable formula and market differentiator under the guidance for consumer choice.

PEA’s Core Service Offerings
Platform/Infrastructure – PEA has developed proprietary tools and processes (supported by services) that unify disparate clinical, operational, and financial activities across the continuum of care with the intent to increase service capture for medications, self-care management products (reimbursable/non-reimbursable)/nutrition, and services (post-acute and outpatient services) to improve quality, service, and financial outcomes.

Services Model – The company provides multiple delivery models- Onsite Teams/Turn-key, Mentor/Manage. All service delivery models are supported by implementation and process change and management experts crossing multiple areas of expertise (Retail Pharmacy, Specialty, Nutrition, Retail, Employer, etc.).

Performance Team – PEA’s highly dedicated Performance Team provides analytic competencies to PEA customers. The goal is to help organize and interpret data results, monthly performance reports, and dashboards with executive and operational leadership on performance related action items.

Organizational Development – The company provides Organizational Development capabilities through onsite and remote “Academy” based curriculums (testing, shadowing, course curriculums).

Being different in the domain
Since their establishment in 2008, PEA has learned the art to manage the “hard work” in the trenches of a basic idea that should be a standard of care. The operational execution is the differentiation – not the idea. Organizations that try these themselves are fraught with challenges and the numbers of 3rd party organizations have misaligned incentives to move the needle on financial, quality, and service measures that matter most for health systems. PEA has built some amazing technology, services, performance, and organizational development capabilities to enable health systems to execute to these endeavors without the reliance on third party misaligned partners.

Serving a dynamic client base
PEA has been credited for gaining the trust of clients over the years; their clients have had immense success in their businesses working on the bouquet of services offered by PEA. Their largest customer has reduced readmission rates by 67.8%, the HCAHPS scores have increased 3% up to 13% depending on the specific measure, reduced benefit expense and improved new margin growth in the millions annually. The company takes in to account a mix of different types/sizes of customers. They take pride in having some esteemed clients in large national health systems like Tenet Health, regional health systems like Sentara Healthcare, and smaller health systems like Owensboro Health.

PEA’s Target Customer Profile includes: Integrated Delivery Health Systems/ACO’s, Provider led Plans, Payers, Employers and State/MCO’s.

“Our customer base is strong in east coast, Southeast and Midwest and the western states are starting to expand.”

Getting candid with the Entrepreneur

What motivated you to start PEA?
There was an epiphany moment that changed everything for me when the results of a Cleveland Clinic research project were published.

What is your philosophy on entrepreneurship?
Put your seatbelt on! It will be the hardest and most gratifying journey of your life. It will take more time, more money and more sacrifice than you think.

What is the best advice you’ve received?
My old coach in college used to say, “it is not about the Xs and Os, it is about the Jimmys and the Joes”…. meaning it is not about the great ideas or the good plays that are drawn up, it is about having the right ‘people on the bus’.

What is the worst advice you’ve received?
That I can’t make it and that I should get a backup plan.

What is the secret to your company’s success?
Focusing on being the best at one thing. We center everything we do on building a great culture, a fantastic team, and are dedicated to accomplishing this goal.

What is your educational background?
BSN – Nursing; Pittsburg State University

What is your guiding business principle?
“Do the right thing.” It is a small world and you are always better off taking the long view into perspective versus the short term.

Knowing the Founder

Jeff Moreland, BSN – CEO/Chief Patient Officer- With strong leadership skills and sheer dedication, Jeff founded Patient Engagement Advisors (PEA) in March 2008 as a self-funded effort and passion driven from results of a Cleveland Clinic research project. He understood that there was a gap within the care process as organizations transition patients across the continuum, and how this uniquely tied to economic impacts to providers, payers, and employers. PEA is now recognized as one of the fastest growing companies in America by Inc. Magazine for 2012, 2013, and 2014 and has recently been awarded by The American Business Awards (2015) for technology innovation.

Carry a nursing background and 21 years of experiences in a variety of senior leadership roles in administrative, clinical, operations, and sales capacities including Senior Vice President for GetWellNetwork, a market leader in Interactive Patient System and Division President for Eclipsys (AllScripts) – a multi-national electronic medical records and services organization specializing in continuity of care objectives across ambulatory, acute, and home environments. He additional serves as a Scientific Advisory Board Member for Wanda Health focused on advancing research and development for improving quality care and costs associated to chronic conditions.

Jeff is an active father of three kids 10, 8, and 5 and volunteers as little league football coach and supports the local gymnastics academy for girls. He is active within Magic City Miracles and homeless and recovering women and children’s support programs locally within Birmingham.

Moreland earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and All-American honors while quarterback and captain of Pittsburg State University’s three NCAA II National Championship appearances