Toward a Strategy of Patient-Centered Access to Primary Care
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Patient-centered access (PCA) to primary care services is rapidly becoming an imperative for efficiently delivering high-quality health care to patients. To enhance their PCA-related efforts, some medical practices and health systems have begun to use various tactics, including team-based care, satellite clinics, same-day and group appointments, greater use of physician assistants and nurse practitioners, and remote access to health services. However, few organizations are addressing the PCA imperative comprehensively by integrating these various tactics to develop an overall PCA management strategy. Successful integration means taking into account the changing competitive and reimbursement landscape in primary care, conducting an evidence-based assessment of the barriers and benefits of PCA implementation, and attending to the particular needs of the institution engaged in this important effort. This article provides a blueprint for creating a multifaceted but coordinated PCA strategy-one aimed squarely at making patient access a centerpiece of how health care is delivered. The case of a Wisconsin-based health system is used as an illustrative example of how other institutions might begin to conceive their fledgling PCA strategies without proposing it as a one-size-fits-all model.
author list (cited authors)
Berry, L. L., Beckham, D., Dettman, A., & Mead, R.