A series of case studies of local areas that stood out in the Commonwealth Fund's 2016 Scorecard on Local Health System Performance.
The Complete Series
Pueblo, in southeastern Colorado, was one of only 14 out of 306 regions nationally to improve on a majority of performance measures tracked by the Commonwealth Fund’s Scorecard on Local Health System Performance, 2016 Edition. Socioeconomic challenges and geographic isolation have fostered a sense of interdependence among local health care providers, who have leveraged the state’s Medicaid expansion to enhance access to care while improving coordination.
The Northeast Ohio region centered on the city of Akron and Summit County has made notable progress expanding access to care. Health systems also have strengthened primary care and improved care transitions, which may explain reductions in potentially avoidable hospitalizations and unplanned readmissions. Collaboration across health and social service sectors is a hallmark of the region, exemplified by use of a shared set of measures assessing residents’ quality of life.
The northern California region of Stockton, including the city and most of the surrounding San Joaquin and Calaveras Counties, stands out along with Akron, Ohio, for having improved on more performance measures than any other region on the Commonwealth Fund’s Scorecard on Local Health System Performance, 2016 Edition. California’s Medicaid expansion enabled local providers to increase capacity, which may explain the improvements on some measures of care quality and reductions in potentially avoidable hospitalizations, emergency department visits, and readmissions.
The hospital referral region encompassing Paducah and its neighboring counties, most in rural Western Kentucky, distinguished itself as one of only a handful of U.S. regions to improve on a majority of measures tracked by the Commonwealth Fund’s Scorecard on Local Health System Performance, 2016 Edition. The most striking gains were tied to the state’s Medicaid expansion, which added nearly 500,000 low-income adults to the program.