September 15, 2008
Vol. I, No. 6
Large Physician Groups Score Low On Key Medical Home Measures
Even large physician practices lack the essential elements to create a medical home for patients to receive care, according to a new study published in the journal Health Affairs. Between March 2006 and March 2007, researchers surveyed all practices with more than 20 physicians across the United States that treat patients with asthma, diabetes, CHF and depression. They looked at four key aspects of the medical home model: whether physicians work closely with other healthcare providers in patient care “teams”; how well care is coordinated and integrated; whether care is delivered in ways that maximize quality and safety; and whether patients can reach physicians in nontraditional ways, such as by e-mail. Researchers also looked at physicians’ use of EMRs, disease registries, patient reminders and performance feedback as well as their distribution of educational materials to patient.
Groups with more than 140 physicians and those owned by a hospital or HMO scored highest on critical measures of the medical home model. Researchers also found that certain components of the medical home appear to be more prevalent than others. For example, 41 percent said that they use EMRs, and just over half share information electronically with hospitals and specialists, but fewer than one-third rely on primary care teams to deliver care. Almost two-thirds distribute guidelines about proper care for chronic diseases. However, only 10 percent scored high on incorporating feedback from patients to improve their practices.
For more details on this study, please visit:
HealthSounds Podcast: Cementing Payor-Provider Investments in the Medical Home
While there is a great deal of interest among public payors in medical home funding models, their funding needs pose several challenges, explains Lesley Reeder, quality improvement specialist for the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing. In this interview, Reeder shares the secrets to a successful payor-provider partnership and discusses some of the code-dependent strategies used by Colorado to reimburse physicians for preventive care services dispensed from the medical home.
To listen to this complimentary HIN podcast, please visit:
Johns Hopkins to Use Guided Care Model to Assist Practices in Medicare Medical Home Demo
Drawing upon its Guided Care model, the Roger C. Lipitz Center for Integrated Health Care at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health will use a $1.7 million grant from the John A. Hartford Foundation to develop and provide primary care practices with online courses for physicians and nurses, a practice implementation manual and technical assistance in meeting the requirements of the three-year CMS Medicare Medical Home Demo.
In the Guided Care model, a specially trained RN is based in a primary care office and works closely with physicians and chronically ill patients to improve quality of life and reduce the need for expensive inpatient health services. The nurse assesses patient needs in their home, develops a care plan, monitors conditions, educates and empowers the patient, supports family caregivers, smoothes transitions between sites of care and works with community agencies to ensure that the patient’s healthcare needs are met.
For more details on the Johns Hopkins initiative, please visit:
How Medical Net Systems EncounterSuite Creates the Framework for the PCMH
The PCMH is a concept for the ideal medical practice of the future. The AAFP’s TransforMed program has reported that the technology to create the PCMH framework is not ready and is fragmented. New solutions must be identified. Medical Net Systems EncounterSuite, an online integrated EMR and PHR, provides a unified turnkey software framework for the PCMH. This is accomplished through its integrated PHR/EMR, point of care wellness and DM guidelines and best practices application, and three tracking modules: patient registries, Inbox (order tracking) and Tracking the Patient at Home module.
To download this complimentary white paper, please visit:
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