Texas Clinic Launch Patient-Centered Medical Home Pilot Program
CIGNA and Medical Clinic of North Texas (MCNT)
have embarked on a patient-centered medical home pilot program,
embracing the best elements of the medical home-based model and
patient-centered medical home model of care
The parties said it is the first such commercially
sponsored program in Texas. MCNT is a Dallas-Fort Worth-based
physicians’ group with more than 120 board-certified primary
care physicians and specialists
They believe such an approach to be comprehensive,
accountable and collaborative and will lead to improved patient access,
better continuity and coordination of care, improved quality of care
for patients and lower medical costs.
"It is critical that we get on a path toward
paying more for healthcare that is better coordinated and leads to
fewer complications and improved results – at a lower overall
cost," said Dr. Mark McClellan, director of the Engelberg Center for
Health Care Reform at the Brookings Institution, and former
administrator of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
The program is focused on individuals, receiving
care from MCNT’s primary care physicians, practicing family
medicine, internal medicine and pediatrics. Currently, more than 10,000
individuals covered by a CIGNA health plan can receive care from MCNT
primary care physicians. Individuals will simply access care from one
of the 82 MCNT primary care physicians participating in the pilot
In a patient-centered medical home model of care,
a primary care physician is responsible for monitoring and coordinating
all aspects of an individual’s medical care. Expanding access
and improving care coordination are the keys to the concept.
"Today’s healthcare system is too
complex and fragmented, and the traditional physician payment structure
de-emphasizes primary care by rewarding specialization and paying
doctors to perform more procedures rather than delivering better
outcomes and providing greater value to their patients," said Dr. Ken
Phenow, CIGNA’s senior medical director for MCNT.
Primary care physicians affiliated with MCNT will
be paid as usual for the medical services they provide and may also be
rewarded through a P4P structure. According to Phenow, emphasizing the
value of the primary care physician as the overall coordinator of their
patients’ health will help increase the professional
satisfaction and financial rewards for doctors who practice in primary
CIGNA is providing funding to establish a process
of care coordination led by a registered nurse working with a team of
professionals supported by MCNT, as well as its data and clinical
The ongoing initiative will be evaluated after at
least 12 months.
CIGNA already participates in several medical home
initiatives throughout the country, including multi-payer pilots in
Colorado, Pennsylvania and Vermont, and a CIGNA-only pilot in New
Hampshire. It has been a member of the Patient-Centered Primary Care
Collaborative since October 2007.
For more information on CIGNA, visit www.cigna.com.
Address: Medical Clinic of North Texas, 9003
Airport Freeway, Suite 300, N. Richland, TX 76180; (817) 514-5200, www.mcnt.com.