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Patient empanelment: A strategy to improve continuity and quality of patient care

Patient empanelment: A strategy to improve continuity and quality of patient care

Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners 28(8): 423-428

In some Federally-Qualified Community Health Centers (FQHCs), patients do not have a designated primary care provider (PCP). Patients see any provider who is available. This leads to fragmented care, poorer outcomes, and higher costs. Patients were empaneled to a designated PCP. Continuity, quality, and efficiency measures were collected at baseline, 6-, and 12-months postempanelment. Three rural FQHCs on the coast of Northern California performing about 18,000 patient visits annually. Patient cycle time, percentage of patient visits with designated PCPs, completion of cervical and colorectal cancer screenings; blood pressure, low-density lipoprotein, and hemoglobin A1c control in patients with diabetes. The senior Leadership Team initiated the patient empanelment project with the assistance of an outside consultant. After 12 months, 100% of the FQHC's patients were assigned a PCP and saw that provider on ≥63% of visits. Quality indicators improved by an average of 9% and cycle time decreased by 12 min. per patient allowing providers to see approximately four more patients and generate an additional $2212 per day. Project outcomes supported the importance of a designated PCP to achieve improved quality and efficiency of care.

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Accession: 058512583

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 26847151

DOI: 10.1002/2327-6924.12341

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