Haverhill’s Dr. Dean Cleghorn Named CEO of Merrimack Valley Accountable Care Organization

Haverhill’s Dr. Dean Cleghorn has been named chief executive officer of the Merrimack Valley Accountable Care Organization, a new group made possible by the Greater Lawrence Family Health Center and Lawrence General Hospital.

The group will work with Neighborhood Health Plan as its managed care partner.

Known as My Care Family, the collaboration will provide health care to 36,000 MassHealth members across the Merrimack Valley. Cleghorn focuses on clinical quality and work to enhance community resources so patients can obtain high-quality medical and behavioral health care locally.

Dianne J. Anderson, president and CEO of Lawrence General Hospital, is thrilled to have Cleghorn on the team.

“We’re so pleased to be able to leverage Dean’s many years of experience, his strong focus on clinical quality and his knowledge of this population of patients,” Anderson said. “He is already a very engaged member of the team that is building this product. We know him well and we are looking forward to his leadership moving our efforts forward.”

Calling the care his colleagues provide “exceptional,” Cleghorn intends to draw on his firsthand experience with local health facilities like GLFHC in his effort to improve Merrmiack Valley health care.

“GLFHC is my primary care provider and I have repeatedly chosen Lawrence General for needed emergency and inpatient care, always with high quality outcomes. Despite their resource limitations, I have found great resilience among patients and a strong determination to participate actively to improve their own health,” Cleghorn said. “I can’t imagine a better place to be part of reforming health care than My Care Family in the Merrimack Valley.”

My Care Family is one of 17 Accountable Care Organizations statewide that will aid in the first overhaul of the Massachusetts Medicaid program in 20 years. Set to begin in March, the five-year MassHealth overhaul will transition from a fee-for-service payment method to a member-centric system that encourages patients to take a more active role in their health decisions.