Medical Home-Buying: PCPCC Issues Purchaser Handbook

Friday, July 18th, 2008
This post was written by Melanie Matthews

The Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative (PCPCC), a coalition of the country’s national business leaders, consumer groups, organizations representing primary care physicians and other healthcare stakeholders, released its Purchaser Guide to the patient-centered medical home (PCMH). The Purchaser Guide, a handbook for understanding the medical home model and taking action to advance its implementation, is available from the PCPCC as a free download.

While targeted at employers and other healthcare purchasers, the guide is an excellent primer on the PCMH. It begins with a definition of the medical home concept and sets out advantages of its implementation for employers based on effectiveness for improving outcomes and lowering healthcare costs. A central impetus of the guide is to spur employer activity. One section illuminates a three-step “jump start” to help employers begin, plus six strategies purchasers can use to advance the PCMH model now:

  • Participate in a regional pilot;
  • Incorporate PCMH into insurer procurement and performance assessment activity;
  • Align payment strategy with PCPCC adoption objectives;
  • Build coalitions in support of PCMH;
  • Engage consumers; and
  • Integrate PCMH into other corporate health strategies.

To flesh out the model, the Purchaser Guide offers five case studies of PCMH initiatives and includes 21 summary examples of PCMH models in operation through the United States. One case study of the PCMH in practice in North Carolina saved the state’s Medicaid program approximately $124 million in a single year.

The guide also includes sample insurance contract language and a Request for Information (RFI) document designed to assist purchasers who want to work with health plans to advance PCMH.

For more information about the PCPCC, go to the organization’s Web site.

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