The Huntzinger Blog


What Works – Huntzinger Defines IT Merger, Acquisition & Affiliation Playbook

Michigan Medicine

Background, Opportunities & Challenges
In February 2016, Michigan Medicine established a formal strategy for clinical growth. The strategy outlined a goal to provide care for 400,000 total lives, which would require the addition of 250,000 lives to the localized patient population they served at the time. Further, Michigan Medicine sought to extend its care delivery network to 3.5 million lives statewide, through acquisitions, affiliations and referrals — an ambitious increase above the existing 2.2 million lives being served. After being brought in late to Michigan Medicine’s Mergers, Acquisitions and Affiliations (MA&A) process on several occasions, Michigan Medicine’s information technology leadership team (the Health Information Technology Services (HITS) department) recognized that they needed a more structured approach, or playbook, to manage the growing number of Michigan Medicine MA&As, and become a more strategic MA&A partner within Michigan Medicine.

Scope of Engagement

  • Merger, Acquisition, and Affiliation Information Technology Methodology (MAAITM)
  • MA&A IT Playbook


Huntzinger Engagement
In 2017, Michigan Medicine selected the Huntzinger Management Group (Huntzinger) to provide advisory services, and develop a set of customized documents and processes to function as the Information Technology (IT) MA&A Playbook. Huntzinger’s methodology addressed the challenge by:

  1. Defining and documenting Michigan Medicine’s organizational, strategic and business objectives
  2. Collecting tools — including spreadsheets and questionnaires — that various groups within HITS had developed on their own
  3. Applying a set of standard processes and tools gained from Huntzinger’s previous experience with MA&A activity
  4. Integrating and modeling these tools along with organizational and strategic information to meet the specific needs of HITS and Michigan Medicine 

Huntzinger’s approach focused on four basic MA&A business models:

  1. Download PDF VersionOrganization entity type (e.g. hospital/health system, physician practice, network, accountable care organization, or internal IT department)
  2. Nature of the perceived relationship
  3. Goal of the new relationship
  4. IT maturity level of the organization with whom the deal was being established

Michigan Medicine’s MA&A goals, business decisions, along with the ability to identify the IT capabilities of MA&A opportunities, strongly influenced the development of the customized set of tools within the Playbook. Huntzinger then delivered the Playbook in a formal session that included HITS Senior Directors, and representatives from other departments who typically participate in Michigan Medicine’s MA&A activity, including financial services, anesthesiology IT, pathology IT, radiology IT, radiation oncology IT, and their affiliates.

The Playbook is already accomplishing its goal of providing a standardized and disciplined approach to IT assessments by assisting HITS and Michigan Medicine executives as they pursue their strategic goals through MA&A processes.

“We contracted with Huntzinger to develop a custom set of documents and processes that will function as our MA&A IT Playbook. The IT Playbook helps us streamline our internal processes and involvement. There is also crossover in how we open new buildings, clinics, and facilities — we anticipate using the IT Playbook to guide those activities as well.”

Andrew Rosenberg, MD
Associate Professor, Anesthesiology & Internal Medicine
Chief Information Officer for Michigan Medicine
Interim Vice President for IT and CIO for University of Michigan

Download PDF Version 

Topics: What Works Series