Opportunities for Extending the Home Health Care

Extending Health Care Americare

Home health care plays a key role in improving health care quality and health outcomes, as well as reducing unnecessary health care spending across our health care system, as more senior citizens and individuals with disabilities and chronic diseases live longer.

Here, Faivish Pewzner, COO of Americare discusses the opportunity of extending the medical home model to home health care as an integral part of the medical neighborhood in order to reduce expensive hospitalizations, improve care coordination and patient experience by caring for patients in their own homes. Furthermore, new models of home care offer higher quality, as well as better service and experience at a lower cost compared with nursing home and hospital care.

Extending Health Care

With the medical home model of care, we can reduce costs while improving quality and efficiency through an innovative approach to delivering comprehensive patient-centered preventive and primary care. The patient-centered medical home model is designed around patient needs. Its goal is to improve access to care through extended office hours and increased communication between providers and patients, increase care coordination and enhance overall quality while reducing costs at the same time.

The objective is to have a centralized setting that facilitates partnerships between individual patients, their personal physicians, and the patient’s family if necessary. In order to assure that patients get the indicated care when and where they need it and want it in a culturally and linguistically appropriate manner, care is facilitated by information technology, health information exchange, registries, and other means.

In a medical home model, primary care clinicians and professionals provide conventional diagnostic and therapeutic services, as well as coordination of care for patients that require services not available in primary care settings. The primary care clinicians serve as advocates for patients and are paid to coordinate their care, thus averting unnecessary tests and procedures, hospital admissions and avoidable complications.

Studies posted by Faivish Pewzner on Patch, show that the medical home model’s attention to the whole-person and integration of all aspects of healthcare offer potential to improve physical health, behavioral health, access to community-based social services, and management of chronic conditions. In addition to that, Faivish Pewzner noted that the medical home model has the potential to reduce overall costs in the U.S. health system.

The two major trends that are currently helping around the medical home model are the growing shortage of primary care clinicians due to adverse practice conditions, and the increasing prevalence of chronic diseases among the U.S. population.