Study: Better Patient Care, Lower Hospital Use in Medical Home Practices with Financial Incentives

eAlert 0081d989-711c-405c-be54-57827a5c5c39

<p>While the medical home model has the potential to deliver accessible, well-coordinated care to patients, past research—including a widely discussed study in 2014—has been mixed on whether it produces better quality or lower use of avoidable services. A new study today, however, shows that when provided with substantial financial incentives, medical homes can outperform other practices on quality measures while also reducing the use of hospital and emergency room care.</p><p>Findings from the Commonwealth Fund–supported study, published in the journal <em>JAMA Internal Medicine</em> by Mark Friedberg, M.D., and colleagues at RAND and Harvard, suggest that the opportunity for practices to receive “shared savings” for superior performance might be one key component missing from earlier medical home demonstrations that found little or no impact on quality and cost. The research team analyzed three years of medical claims data from more than 17,000 patients in practices participating in the Pennsylvania Chronic Care Initiative.</p>
<p>In a <a href="/blog/2015/strengthening-primary-care-amid-hype">post</a> to <em>The Commonwealth Fund Blog</em>, study coauthor Eric Schneider, M.D., says that the new research represents “an important step in the progression of this innovation—and one from which delivery system innovators, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, and policymakers can draw lessons.”</p> Read the study