In 2009, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and its physician partners launched the nation’s largest Patient-Centered Medical Home program. Developed in partnership with providers, the Patient-Centered Medical Home program is transforming the primary health care system into a model of efficient, cost-effective care centered around the patient.
The Value Partnerships PCMH model follows these principles:
- Physicians will deliver higher-quality, lower-cost care when they use processes and tools that engage patients in a team approach to managing their health, and when they coordinate care for patients and give them access to care in the right setting.
- Patients who have full access, including after hours, to their primary care physician will be more likely to receive the care they need in the appropriate setting, and will decrease their use of the emergency department for non-emergency conditions.
- Primary care physicians who effectively manage their patients’ chronic conditions may help prevent hospitalizations, thus improving care outcomes and decreasing costs.
- Physicians can more effectively manage their patients’ health through the use of secure, electronic patient registries and performance reporting tools.
In 2012, the Michigan Blues designated 3,029 physicians in 995 practices across the state as patient-centered medical homes based on their progress in implementing PCMH capabilities and qualities, and based on high performance on quality and use measures.
An additional 3,500 physicians are improving their processes and implementing medical home capabilities in an effort to earn designation in coming years. Together, all 6,500 physicians are improving the health care system in Michigan.
PCMH-designated physicians earn an enhanced fee for office visits, to compensate them for the extra time and effort required to practice as a medical home.