Study Finds Coordinated Approach Improves Quality of Primary Care
New York, NY - Primary care doctors practicing in a model of coordinated, team-based care that leverages health information technology are more likely to give patients recommended preventive screening and appropriate tests than physicians working in other settings, according to research published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. The study comparing quality of care by physicians using a delivery model known as the patient-centered medical home (PCMH) to care from physicians in non-PCMH practices provides evidence that the previously unproven but popular model effectively provides care for patients.
"The study showed that primary care physicians participating in PCMHs improved their quality of care over time at a significantly higher rate than their non-PCMH peers," said lead author Dr. Lisa Kern, an associate professor of healthcare policy and research at Weill Cornell Medical College. "The PCMH model combines electronic health records (EHRs) with organizational changes, including changes in the roles and responsibilities of clinicians and staff. It was the combination of EHRs plus organizational changes that was associated with the greatest quality improvement; EHRs alone were not enough."
Although a PCMH could operate without EHRs, the technology has been shown to improve communication among providers, patients and their care teams. It keeps patients better informed about their health and guides providers' medical decision-making. In order to become a PCMH, a medical practice must undergo rigorous certification and demonstrate proficiency across a wide range of performance standards. Continue>
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