CA. Health Centers Receive Award

Mendocino Community Health Clinic (MCHC) www.mchcinc.org in the Little Lake Health Center in California, has become the first health center in Mendocino County to receive recognition as a Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) from the National Committee on Quality Assurance (NCQA) www.ncqa.org where they earned Level 3 Recognition.

MCHC is a local non-profit organization offering medical, dental, and behavioral health services to people in Ukiah, Willits, and Lakeport all located in California. All MCHC health centers accept Medi-Cal, Medicare, Covered California insurance, and more.

A good example of how the PCMH was able to help occurred when a 35 year old mother of two was struggling to manage her diabetes and wanted to avoid expensive visits to the Emergency Room (ER).

To avoid going to the ER, she now works with a PCMH team who reminds her to make an appointment if she has not seen her doctor recently. When she does goes to her doctor, she is examined and is given a blood test to determine whether she falls within healthy guidelines.

The PCMH team can also help if she needs transportation to get to her medical appointments. If she needs to see a specialist, her team will coordinate the care and check to be sure that the results of the visit with the specialist will come back to the PCMH.

If she is feeling anxious or depressed about her situation and wants to see a therapist, her medical provider will help her meet the therapist. When she leaves the PCMH, she receives a summary of her visit so she does not have to remember everything she is told during the visit.

One of the most difficult challenges in healthcare is helping vulnerable populations improve their health and not be stressed out trying to keep healthy. PCMHs can help by tracking vulnerable patient populations including patients who are poverty stricken or homeless as well as seniors.

In another community in Monterey California, The Monterey PrimeCare Medical Group http://primecaremedicalgroup.com in partnership with Cypress Healthcare Partners (CHP) and Community Health Innovations (CHI) http://communityhealthinnovations.com was recognized by NCQA as a level 3 patient-centered medical home.

CHI was founded to lead the transformation of healthcare in Monterey County from a system focused on sick care to one focused on wellness. CHI engaged CHP, a Monterrey-based practice management company as a strategic partner in the PCMH transformation.

Together the organizations were able to establish the Best Practice Team (BPT), where a group of experienced practice operations staff and nurses were able to design and implement new workflow processes.

In partnership with doctors and other providers, CHI was able to introduce integrated population management, an approach to bring hospitals, doctors, and other providers together to coordinate care, manage disease, and promote wellness throughout the healthcare continuum.

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