Dickinson physician practices earn patient-centered medical homes designation from BCBS

DETROIT – Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan has designated six Dickinson County practices as patient-centered medical homes for the 2014 program year.

This means that they have particular qualities and processes that help improve health care quality and lower costs through a coordinated, team focus on their patients’ health and wellness.

Designated practices include:

Dickinson Family and

Geriatric Clinic

Dickinson Family

Practice Kingsford

Dickinson Family

Practice Norway

Dickinson Internal

Medicine

Dickinson Pediatric

Clinic

Marquette Medical

Clinic Kingsford

Through patient-centered medical homes, primary care physicians lead care teams that work with patients to keep them healthy and monitor their care on an ongoing basis. PCMH teams coordinate patients’ health care across all locations for care, to help patients meet their personal health goals. Care is based on each patient’s personal health goals, and often extends into non-clinical factors that may influence a person’s health status, such as emotional, behavioral and social needs.

“In a patient-centered medical home, patients have a team of professionals who track and guide their care, focusing on keeping them healthy and managing illness,” said David Share, M.D., MPH, BCBSM senior vice president. “PCMH patients are being admitted to the hospital or going to the ER less than patients at non-PCMH practices, which leads to lower costs because there is less need for testing and hospital care.”

In fact, last year, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan announced certified savings of $155 million in prevented ER and hospital claims from the first three years of the PCMH designation program. Savings estimates for year four are expected later this year.

Blue-designated PCMH practices also had an 8.7 percent lower rate of adult high-tech radiology use, and a 9.9 percent lower rate of adult ER visits over non-PCMH doctors.

Pediatric patients had a 14.9 percent lower rate of ER visits overall, and a 21.3 lower rate of ER visits expressly due to them receiving appropriate and timely in-office care.

“The patient-centered medical home model encourages and enables doctors and their care teams to manage their patients’ care continually, rather than simply provide care once patients are sick,” Share said.

“Physicians across Michigan have been motivated to transform their practices into patient-centered medical homes, as evidenced by the continued growth of this program for the last six years.”