Event To Highlight Successes, Challenges Of Transforming Delivery Of Care For Underserved

CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield's (CareFirst) four-year investment in patient-centered medical home (PCMH) programs operated by 11 safety net health centers helped improve care for more than 68,000 low-income and chronically ill patients throughout Maryland, Northern Virginia and Washington, D.C. However, challenges related to staffing, information technology infrastructure and other key areas can adversely affect the implementation of comprehensive PCMH models in safety net settings.

These findings and other key learnings will be discussed when CareFirst CEO Chet Burrell, leaders of safety net health centers involved in the program and other national experts meet during a symposium to be held at the Newseum in D.C. on April 11. To leverage the findings from its initial program, CareFirst, which is co-hosting the event with the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative (PCPCC), also will announce plans to award another $3 million to safety net PCMH programs later this year.

"This initiative has reinforced our belief that patients' relationship with their primary care physician is the most important factor in determining health care outcomes," said Maria Harris Tildon, CareFirst's Senior Vice President of Public Policy and Community Affairs. "While there are challenges to effectively coordinating care in a patient-centered medical home, we're encouraged with the progress our safety net health partners have made and want to continue to support the delivery of patient-centered care in safety net centers."

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