New primary care model seeing results in Massachusetts

Commonwealth Medicine helps to lead medical home demonstration project

By Tom Lyons and Bryan Goodchild

UMass Medical School Communications

August 07, 2013

With support from UMass Medical School’s Commonwealth Medicine division, primary care practices across the state are transforming into patient-centered medical homes and seeing improvements in how patients with chronic diseases are managing their illnesses. For example, new data shows these practices are seeing improvements in screening for depression among diabetic patients, the number of children with asthma action plans and the number of chronic disease patients with care management plans.

“UMass Medical School is a lead in a statewide patient-centered medical home demonstration that involves 45 practices across the state called the Massachusetts Patient-Centered Medical Home Initiative, and it’s been very successful,” said Judith Steinberg, MD, MPH, the deputy chief medical officer for Commonwealth Medicine, who has led the multi-disciplinary team in implementing and evaluating the project.

The project focuses on helping practices adopt characteristics central to medical homes, including increased access to care, improved coordination among care team members and the delivery of care that supports the involvement of patients and families in all care decisions.

In this Expert’s Corner video, Dr. Steinberg summarizes the clinical quality improvements seen in the first two years of the project. In June, Steinberg and colleagues reported on the project’s results thus far atAcademyHealth’s annual research meeting.

To learn more about Commonwealth Medicine’s work in primary care practice transformation and patient-centered medical homes, visit their Center for Health Policy and Research website.