The Pediatric Center in Boulder Achieves Highest Level of Medical Home CertificationDate: June 28th, 2017Category: CORHIO e-NewsletterTopics: Transformation Support Services
Practice becomes only certified pediatric medical home in Boulder by adopting an improved care model, with help from CORHIO’s Transformation Support Services.
The Pediatric Center in Boulder spent two years working towards becoming a certified medical home and recently learned they not only “passed” their certification, they earned the highest level possible. Pediatric practices that are also medical homes are uncommon, as medical homes are typically family practice and internal medicine. In fact, The Pediatric Center is the only pediatric practice in Boulder with this honor. Statewide, only 271 practices have achieve patient-centered medical home accreditation, according to the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA).
The Center’s six clinicians are included in the certification: Naomi Feiman MD, Jill Kamon MD, Pamela Rubner MD, Daniel Sarko MD, Aneel Gursahaney MD and Diana Tanney MD. Judy Dietz, MBA, the practice administrator, spearheaded the effort, which involved rethinking some of their processes and hiring a care coordinator to join their team. “It was a great way to look at things differently,” she said. “We’ve all been here for a long time – we were set in our ways. This program allowed us to look at things with fresh eyes and improve our practice.”
Improved Care Coordination for Patients
Patient-Centered Medical Homes typically employ at least one care coordinator to follow up with patients about care plans, appointments and anything else needed to keep them on track. The Pediatric Center decided to have their care coordinator focus on patients with special needs, as their care can be complex and involve several caregivers. “She puts together a care plan with goals and identifies things that might stand in the way. She checks in with them quarterly to see how things are going, asks if they’re seeing any new doctors or specialists, and generally asks what can we do to help,” says Dietz.
A Little Handholding and Encouragement
Becoming a certified medical home can involve a great deal of coordination and paperwork, and is typically done as a side project amid a busy practice. Dietz worked without outside assistance for the first year, then reached out to CORHIO’s Transformation Support Services Manager Erin Dormaier. “Honestly without Erin, we would not have gotten to level three,” says Dietz. “She was able to explain sections that I didn’t understand fully and show me how close we were. I used her project management tool and it was fantastic – it really helped me stay on track.”
With medical home certification under their belts, The Pediatric Center hopes to increase reimbursements from payers. Their new care coordination model should lower costs and head off issues like hospital admissions for easily caught issues.