he Commonwealth Fund launched the Patient-Centered Primary Care Initiative in 2005 to spur the redesign of primary care practices and health care systems around the needs of the patient. Projects supported by the initiative seek to promote:
Despite being named one of the key components of quality health care by the Institute of Medicine (IOM), "patient-centeredness" has yet to become the norm in primary care. One of five American adults has trouble communicating with
doctors, and one of 10 feels he or she was treated disrespectfully during a recent health care visit.(1)
The Commonwealth Fund 2006 International Survey of Primary Care Physicians shows that less than half of U.S. physicians receive feedback from patient surveys and just 9 percent always or often communicate with patients via e-mail.(2)
A little over a quarter use electronic medical records in their practices.
In the essay, "A 2020 Vision of Patient-Centered Primary Care
," Karen Davis, Stephen C. Schoenbaum, M.D., and Anne-Marie J. Audet, M.D., outlined what it will take to orient physician practices around patients.(3)
The authors define a patient-centered primary care practice through seven attributes: