It’s been nine years since Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan began designating certain physicians as part of Patient-Centered Medical Homes (PCMH), and every year the program has gotten bigger and bigger. This year is no different. There are now PCMH-designated practices in 81 of Michigan’s 83 counties. Those 4,692 physicians all share one common goal: to work closely with an entire care team so that each patient receives the right treatment at the right time by the right provider.
This doesn’t just make a lot of sense, it also has a real impact on people’s health. This year, PCMH-designated practices have resulted in:
- 19% lower rate of ER visits for adults
- 23% lower rate of primary care sensitive ER visits for adults
- 25% lower rate of ambulatory care sensitive inpatient stays for adults
- 15% lower rate of pediatric ER visits
- 20% lower rate of primary care sensitive pediatric ER visits
Those are just some of the changes that have helped avoid $427 million in health care spending over the past six years.
This combination of better care, better outcomes and lower costs is exactly what Alina Pabin, a Blue Cross employee and member, experienced. After going in to see an orthopedic surgeon for back pain, her PCMH-designated doctor was able to review a CT scan she already had in her file for a different issue. As a result, she got a diagnosis quickly, without having to go through the same imaging procedure twice. “I avoided unnecessary (and potentially harmful) radiation, saved money and my doctor was able to immediately turn his attention to what was most important: helping me resolve my back problems,” she says.
And then there’s what Michael Azar experienced. When he hurt his ankle last year, the then-17 year old went to get it treated at the emergency room. Because his pediatrician is part of a PCMH, his doctor was notified and scheduled a comprehensive follow-up that included blood work. The results of those tests helped them catch prediabetes early. Michael then met with other providers within the PCMH, including a registered dietitian and a care manager, and was given the tools he needed to lose weight and improve his health.
Here’s more on how Patient-Centered Medical Homes put patients first:
To find a doctor who is PCMH-designated, use the Find a Doctor tool on bcbsm.com and look for PCMH-Certified. For more on how Patient-Centered Medical Homes can improve your health, visit these other blogs:
- This Model of Health Care Has Changed Michigan for the Better
- Is Your Doctor Part of a PCMH? 4 Reasons You Should Find Out
- Why a Patient-Centered Medical Home Might Be Right for Your Employees
Photo credit: US Army Africa