Aetna Reconfirms Support For The Patient-Centered Medical Home Model of Primary Care
New ways to compensate physicians for primary care must support the use of health information technology to better coordinate the delivery of care
HARTFORD, Conn. — Aetna (NYSE: AET) today reconfirmed its support for the Patient-Centered Medical Home. Speaking on a panel at Internal Medicine 2009, the annual scientific meeting of the American College of Physicians in Philadelphia, Don Liss, MD, FACP, Aetna regional medical director, said Aetna will push for rigorous evaluation of the Patient-Centered Medical Home and related models for delivering more effective and coordinated primary care. The Patient-Centered Medical Home is a model of primary care that emphasizes care by a physician-led team of health care providers supported by health information technology. This technology, which includes registries and electronic health records, helps physicians manage chronic conditions more effectively and be more accessible to patients. Payments to primary care physicians recognize the value of non face-to-face services needed to coordinate care.
“New methodologies to compensate primary care practices for systemic care coordination are fundamental to the overall improvement of our health care system,” Dr. Liss said. “Payment reform should address practical methods to recognize the value of care coordination, electronic visits, and health information technology.”
“ACP is very encouraged by Aetna’s support for testing the Patient-Centered Medical Home concept,” stated Michael S. Barr, vice president for practice advocacy and improvement, American College of Physicians. “Dr. Liss has been extremely helpful to medical home demonstration programs by offering important insights to project stakeholders from the perspective of a large, national health care benefits company.”
“We still need the evidentiary base that will establish the impact of this model on quality, cost and patient satisfaction,” Dr. Liss added. “Toward that end, Aetna is investing in formal evaluation of the Patient-Centered Medical Home model and participating in demonstration pilots as part of the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative (PCPCC).” The PCPCC is a coalition of employers, unions, consumer advocates, patient quality organizations, physicians, hospitals and medical organizations including the American College of Physicians.
About the American College of Physicians
The American College of Physicians is the largest medical specialty organization and the second-largest physician group in the United States. ACP members include 126,000 internal medicine physicians (internists) related sub specialists, and medical students. Internists specialize in the prevention, detection and treatment of illness in adults. For more information, see www.acponline.org.
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