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Gundersen receives Patient-Centered Medical Home certification


Fri, Nov 29th, 2013
Posted in All Health & Wellness

Primary care clinics throughout Gundersen Health System recently received Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) certification. This designation comes from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving healthcare quality.

PCMH is a healthcare model that emphasizes care coordination and fosters partnerships between patients and their primary care providers. It’s designed to assure that patients get quality primary care when and where they need and want it, in a manner sensitive to their cultural beliefs and in language they understand.

“Gundersen Health System is committed to providing high-quality, comprehensive and accessible healthcare to our patients. To accomplish this, a dedicated team is necessary to ensure all of the processes are in place to provide patient-centered care,” reports Mary Kuffel, MD, Gundersen medical vice president, Operating Team 1 and Regional Systems.

Within Gundersen’s clinics, primary care teams have been established. Team members work together to deliver care for patients and to ensure each role within the care team functions at its highest scope. Research confirms that medical homes can lead to higher quality and lower costs, and can improve patient and provider satisfaction.

“One of the intended benefits of the Medical Home is to foster greater engagement of patients,” explains Marilu Bintz, MD, Gundersen vice president, Operating Team III. “We know that a patient’s outcome improves as they get more engaged in their own care. We as providers can give patients all kinds of recommendations, but unless those recommendations reflect the desires and goals of the patient, he or she will not be motivated to follow through. The Medical Home strives to really serve the patient where they are, not where the provider is.”

PCMH is the model of care for Gundersen primary care including Family Medicine, General Internal Medicine and Pediatrics. Gundersen has primary care clinics in:

•Wisconsin at La Crosse, Blair, Galesville, Independence, Onalaska, Prairie du Chien, Sparta, Tomah, Viroqua and Whitehall Clinics

•Iowa at Calmar, Decorah, Fayette, Lansing, Postville, Waukon and West Union Clinics

•Minnesota at Harmony, Houston, La Crescent and Spring Grove Clinics

Although Gundersen only recently received PCMH certification, their way of caring for patients has long followed Medical Home principles.

At Gundersen, Medical Home is where…

•Patients go for all their healthcare—for wellness visits and when they are ill or injured.

•Patients are partners in their own care, with emphasis on preventive care to keep you healthy rather than just treating patients when they’re sick.

•Primary care providers get to know their patients and their medical histories so health problems can be caught early reducing emergency room or after-hour visits.

•Same-day appointments for illnesses and injuries are usually available.

•Patients have a Medical Home care team so if their primary-care provider is unavailable, another team member can care for them.

•Care is delivered with respect to the patient’s culture and language needs.

•If a patient needs care beyond a clinic visit, the healthcare team will coordinate all care, including specialty and hospital services.

•Patients have computer access to their medical records and members of their Medical Home care team.

•Patients can call a Gundersen Nurse Advisor anytime for health information, home treatment options or referrals so they can get the right level of care.

For more information about medical home or to find a primary care provider, call Gundersen at (608) 775-0601.

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