Doctor with patient

Blue Cross CEO Dan Loepp: PCMH is a Model Program for Higher-Quality Care

Let’s face it. Everyone wants to be healthy. No one wants to go to the Emergency Room – especially if it can be avoided.

That’s why we’ve worked hard to help our members stay healthier through our nationally-recognized Patient-Centered Medical Home program.

In a Patient-Centered Medical Home, primary care physicians lead teams to proactively tailor care for each patient’s unique needs, even considering behavioral, social and community factors that may impact the patient’s health. In this whole-person approach, patients not only receive needed tests and screenings, but they are also taught how to manage their care and how to prevent conditions from worsening.

As the nation’s largest and longest-running PCMH designation program, it has fueled great outcomes. Patients in PCMH-designated practices are getting better care, staying healthier, and going to the hospital and ER less. That also reduces expenses.

These practices also had a 16-percent lower rate of ER visits by adults and a 26-percent lower rate of ER visits by children for common chronic and acute conditions, such as asthma. This success has also avoided $626 million in costs over the nine years of programming, which helps keep costs down for members.

Blue Cross is proud to lead the nation in advancing the Patient-Centered Medical Home model, now in its tenth year, with our physician partners. A majority of our primary care physicians in our PPO network are designated as patient-centered medical homes in 80 of 83 Michigan counties. And each practice is part of the national high-performing network of Blue Distinction Total Care providers.

When our members see a practice with that designation, they can feel secure knowing it’s part of a program that’s delivering results.

While no other PCMH designation program has matched the results of the Blue Cross PCMH, we’re proud that health plans across the nation are taking notice, recognizing primary care physicians for their designation and looking to start their own PCMH programs. That means better care and better health for more people.

PCMH practices are an example of an extraordinary innovation that has been serving members and improving the health of people across America for a decade. We’re happy to have led the way in this transformative care model, and we will continue to innovate to improve health and wellness for our members and our communities.

Photo credit: Jupiterimages

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