Patient Experience Unchanged With New Patient-Centered Medical Homes
According to an article published in American Medical News journal, the theory behind the patient-centered medical home is not producing the predicted positive response from patients. A survey was conducted by Health Services Research that questioned patients about their experience with the patient-centered medical home; the majority claimed their experience was unchanged since the adoption of the medical home program.
The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) describes the patient-centered medical home as a program that is intended to create relationships of communication and information between doctors and patients, and, when necessary, a patient’s family. The focus of the program is to organize patient care through medical teams that coordinate and track care over time.
The researchers involved in the patient study reported surprise with their findings; they had hypothesized that the patient-centered medical home would greatly improve the patient experience, but their results revealed an unchanged response from patients. Grant R. Martsolf, RN, MPH, lead author of the study, told American Medical News that the medical home has the potential to take on a “factory” feel; he claimed it could improve the efficiency of administering care but the patient experience could suffer.
Robin Clarke, MD, assistant clinical professor at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, has been working closely with the research findings of the patient-centered program but admits that “We haven’t spent a lot of time talking to patients about what they perceive to be patient-centered care and what they want to see in a primary care practice.” Facilities that are implementing the patient-centered medical home understand that it is a process that not only changes care but also changes culture and will take time for everyone involved to adjust.
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