Coordination of Care: The Patient-Centered Medical Home

The “patient-centered medical home” is emerging as a leading model for efficient management and delivery of quality care (particularly to an increasingly chronically ill US population), because it links multiple points of health delivery by utilizing a team approach with the patient at the center.  An ideal medical home setting emphasizes primary care, utilizes interoperable electronic records to maximize coordination, and involves the patient in decision making to maximize adherence to care plans. Some variations broaden the patient-centered medical home model beyond the physician’s office and into the community and the patients’ home.1  The medical home model creates a new emphasis on primary care and depends on the availability of a robust primary care workforce, including physicians, nurses, social workers, care managers, dietitians, pharmacists, occupational therapists, and other allied health professionals.  Investments aimed at increasing our primary care workforce will have to be considered to make care coordination through the medical home a reality.