Unveils Patient-Centered Medical Home Program
Baltimore, Maryland Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown,
speaking before a symposium of physicians and nurse practitioners,
encouraged the audience to participate in a new patient-centered
medical home (PCMH) program. The program was created through
legislation championed by Brown, passed by the General Assembly and
signed into law by Gov. Martin O’Malley.
The program will allow Maryland to move forward
health care reform, improve the quality of care and reduce costs by
providing physicians with incentives to spend more time with patients,
coordinate care and promote prevention and wellness, Brown said. It
will allow the state to "diverge from a reactive health care
environment and advance a practical, proactive way of providing
improved health care for our residents," he added.
PCMHs provide advanced primary care through a team
health professionals, guided by a personal physician. Their focus is to
provide patients with continuous, comprehensive and coordinated care in
a culturally and linguistically sensitive manner.
The Maryland Health Care Commission will oversee
program that initially involved 50 practices, 200 physicians and
reached approximately 200,000 Marylanders.
The Maryland Health Quality and Cost Council,
Brown, is charged with identifying ways to improve the quality of
health care across the state and lowering the cost of care for all
Marylanders. Last year the council implemented the Hand Hygiene
Collaborative that aims to prevent hospital-acquired infections.
"The medical home model aims to improve patient
and elevate the role of the primary care provider in our health
system," said Maryland Health and Mental Hygiene Secretary John M.
Geisinger Community Practice Service Line in
Pennsylvania implemented the concept four years ago and the results
have improved quality of care and provider satisfaction.
"Our results show a sustained reduction in
readmissions by 40 percent, statistically significant improvements in
chronic disease and preventive care measures, patient satisfaction and
professional satisfaction," said Dr. Thomas Graf, chair of the
Geisinger Service Line.
PCMH pilot programs are underway in over 20
states, including a nine-practice pilot established in Maryland in
Address: Maryland Health Quality and Cost Council,
201 West Preston Street, Baltimore, MD 21201; (877) 463-3464, http://dhmh.maryland.gov/mhqcc/.