July 2014 Newsletter

Making the Pitch for Your  

Medical Home  


Maine Quality Counts (MQC) recently gave constructive feedback on how to 'pitch' a medical home to different audiences - both patients and administrators. Below are a few tips when explaining what a medical home is, and what is important for your audience to know. 

  1. Share a personal story - if you are a nurse by training, or a patient in a Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) - explain why being a part of a PCMH is important to you.
  2. Use a patient-friendly term for PCMH - there is actually a negative connotation around the term PCMH from a patient perspective. You may want to describe your quality improvement journey or new model of care instead.
  3. Find the best way to describe what being a PCMH means to your practice. Perhaps your practice excels at transitioning patients from the hospital to outpatient setting, providing patients with self-management support, or creating provider-patient relationships - highlight the strengths of your practice!

Explaining PCMH to administrators:

  1. Highlight your successes - not the problems. Connect with how the leaders have helped your practice to achieve the success it has had.
  2. Restate your objectives - whether you need the leadership team to continue to support your initiative or actual resources, make your needs known and clear.

MQC also offers free webinars on topics such as shared decision making presented by national leaders. 

Video Resources from the AAFP - Help Improve Your Practice!  


The American Academy of Family Physicians developed six videos around PCMH including patient registries, patient self-management support, team-based care, using data to improve your practice, patient experience, and model for improvement. Family physicians discuss their best practices and how they have become a PCMH.  


The videos can be viewed on the AAFP website here.

Access PA SPREAD Resources!  


New resources are always being added to our website at www.paspread.com to help you on your quality improvement journey! From diabetes care to decision support to tobacco cessation - PA SPREAD is your first stop for resources. We are always looking to share best practices. If you would like to be featured or have resources you would like to share, please contact us at paspread@hmc.psu.edu.

Best Practices Spotlight


Graham Medical Clinic in Newville includes smoking cessation and counseling in the vital sign stage of the patient visits. By doing so, they have assured that this is performed with 100% of patients seen. This best practice can also be done with BMIs. As Meaningful Use requirements increase, practices will be under pressure to improve and show consistent performance on these core measures.

In The Literature

Effects of Nurse-Managed Protocols in the Outpatient Management of Adults with Chronic Conditions: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis  


  Patients with diabetes, hypertension, and hyperlipidemia have benefited from a team approach that utilizes nurse-managed protocols. Nurse-managed protocols around hemoglobin A1C levels, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, total cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol have produced widespread positive effects on chronically ill patients.

The Patient-Centered Medical Home, Electronic Health Records, and Quality of Care 


Implementation of Electronic Health Records (EHRs) in Patient-Centered Medical Homes (PCMHs) have shown to be more effective for patients in receiving recommended care over time (7% higher than non-PCMH paper-based practices, and 6% higher than non-PCMH EHR implemented practices).


Other key improvement strategies: 1) changing culture towards population management 2) building a team by defining roles and responsibilities and 3) becoming accountable for performance.


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