Aetna (NYSE: AET) announced today the launch of its Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) program in Massachusetts. The program recognizes primary care physicians (PCPs) who more actively coordinate and manage their patients’ care across the health care system. By strengthening the role of PCPs, the PCMH program aims to improve patient health outcomes. “Patient-centered care is something Aetna has always advocated. Our PCMH program rewards PCPs who focus on the patient’s entire health needs, not just a single condition,” said Elizabeth Curran, head of National Network Strategy and Program Development for Aetna. “As a result, members may experience better health, fewer hospitalizations, improvements in transitions of care, and greater engagement. The PCMH program is one more way we are moving from a system that rewards the quantity of procedures to a system that rewards quality outcomes.” Primary care providers who participate in Aetna’s networks, who have been recognized by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) as a PCMH, and who are not participating in other quality incentive programs with Aetna are being considered for the PCMH program in Massachusetts. Recognized providers will receive a quarterly Coordination of Care payment for each commercial (non-Medicare) Aetna member in their care. The NCQA-recognized PCMH practices are recognized for providing a number of services, including:
- Improved access to care, such as the ability to reach health professionals outside normal business hours;
- Proactive and planned preventive care (screenings, physicals, labs);
- Improved access through e-mail, web or telephone visits; and
- Access to nurses and other health care professionals, allowing more focused physician visits.