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EmblemHealth Study In Journal Of General Internal Medicine Finds Implementation Of Patient-Centered Medical Homes Improves Quality And Efficiency

NEW YORK, March 28, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- An EmblemHealth project found evidence that practice redesign and embedded care management in general adult primary care practices using the Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) model results in modest, but promising, reduction in Emergency Department (ED) visits and improved quality of care. The findings, reported in an independent study by University of Connecticut ( UConn) researchers, were published online by the Journal of General Internal Medicine on March 2, 2013.

Led by Judith Fifield, Ph.D. at UConn, and supported by The Commonwealth Fund, "Quality and Efficiency in Small Practices Transitioning to Patient-Centered Medical Homes: A Randomized Trial," investigates changes in quality of care and efficiency of care associated with a supportive PCMH transition package compared to a practice attempting the transition alone.

In September 2012, the same UConn research team published the results of an independent study of the first randomized controlled trial of the EmblemHealth Patient-Centered Medical Home project.  The study demonstrated that even small and solo primary care practices can transition successfully to full PCMH status when the practices are provided with support, including practice redesign, care managers, and a revised payment plan.  However, less had been known about the associated quality and efficiency outcomes when practices transition to a Patient-Centered Medical Home.

This new study looked at quality and efficiency outcomes associated with a two -year transition to PCMHs among physicians in 18 intervention practices with 43 physicians, versus 14 control practices with 24 physicians, all from adult primary care practices.

"This study adds to the growing evidence that there is opportunity for improved quality and efficiency when practices transition to Patient-Centered Medical Homes," says Dr. Fifield.

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