Accountability Is Driving Force Behind Patient-Centered Care

Accountability will continue to be a key element in the future of healthcare reform. Whether in accountable care organizations, patient-centered medical homes (PCMHs), or other innovative programs for coordinating care-finding a way to drive quality-focused care is essential.

Accountability will continue to be a key element in the future of healthcare reform. Whether in accountable care organizations, patient-centered medical homes (PCMHs), or other innovative programs for coordinating care—finding a way to drive quality-focused care is essential. Decreasing hospital admissions, patient readmissions, and reducing length of stay are only some benefits of accountability; especially when using health information technology (HIT).

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (BCBSM),for instance, recently designated 1243 state physician practices as PCMHs. They found that these providers delivered favorable results in patients' hospital visits and services in comparison to non-PCMS. Remarkably for the studied adults, there was a 8.8% reduction in emergency department (ED) visits, an 11.2% reduction in primary-care sensitive ED visits, and a 7.3% reduction in high-tech radiation services.

“Now that we’re in our fifth year of this program, we’re seeing measurable improvement in patient outcomes, and doctors are telling us that their practices are more fulfilling, effective, and efficient,” BCBSM Senior Vice President David Share, MD, MPH, said in a public statement. “In the last 2 years, specialist physicians have begun collaborating with primary care physicians and changing their care processes guided by the PCMH model, so that patients’ care is truly managed across the spectrum.”

As well, a recent study published in The American Journal of Managed Care found that care coordination and HIT in the Patient Aligned Care Teams (PACT) at the Department of Veterans Affairs significantly and positively influenced primary care for veteran patients.

“Introducing PACT into VA primary care has already had positive impacts on care coordination, continuity, and access for our Veteran patients,” Gordon Schectman, MD, Chief Consultant of Primary Care Services for VHA, said in a release statement. “Thanks to VHA’s comprehensive electronic health record system and data analysis capabilities, we are able to see as we progress exactly how this patient-centered, team-based approach is influencing patient access, health outcomes, and experience of care. Such information will provide the framework for ongoing improvements in these patient care areas that are critical to the Veterans we serve.”

Enforcement of accountability in care coordination is continually improving the quality of patient treatment as well as bettering their health outcomes. Dr Kyle Murphy says adoption of the best evidence-based practices will be important for providers to consider. “It’s quite clear that accountability—whether in the form of an accountable organization or a pilot project—is capable of reducing the number of preventable hospital services by placing a premium on coordination.”

Around the Web

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Designates 1243 Physician Practices

[PR Newswire]

How is Accountability Affecting Rate of Readmissions? [EHR Intelligence]

The Patient-Centered Medical Home in the Veterans Health Administration [AJMC]

Study Examines Impact of VA Primary Care Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) Reorganization [AJMC]

Study Examines Impact of VA Primary Care Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) Reorganization - See more at: http://www.ajmc.com/newsroom/Study-Examines-Impact-of-VA-Primary-Care-Patient-Centered-Medical-Home-PCMH-Reorganization-#sthash.lcK5TRgP.dpuf