"The two words ‘information’ and ‘communication’ are often used interchangeably, but they signify quite different things. Information is giving out; communication is getting through." -- Sydney J. Harris

MNCM Supports Research Study of Primary Care Clinics into Medical Homes

MN Community Measurement participated in a recently released study to examine the transformation of Minnesota primary care clinics into medical homes. The study was funded by a Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) grant to the HealthPartners Institute for Education and Research. AHRQ was interested in research that identified, described and disseminated the best methods for transforming the structure, characteristics and functions of primary care so practices could improve quality, decrease costs and better satisfy the needs of patients.

The study results were published online in the American Journal of Managed Care on September 23, 2014. Click here to read the entire study.

It assessed the association between the amount of change in medical home transformation and the satisfaction of patients, physicians and other staff with the experience. Lead physicians were asked about the presence and change over the past three years of medical home-related practice systems, as well as the job satisfaction of their physicians and staff. Patients were also surveyed about their experience. Overall, the transformation into medical homes led to positive changes in both physician and staff job satisfaction, but negative patient experience related to the access of care. Other patient experience areas were unaffected.

MNCM was one of many partners who contributed to the study, including the Minnesota Department of Health, Minnesota Department of Human Services, HealthPartners Institute for Education and Research, University of Minnesota and several Minnesota health plans. Anne Snowden, MNCM’s Director of Performance Measurement & Reporting, served on the AHRQ grant steering committee for the study and consulted on the data and its uses. MNCM provided clinic-level performance data for optimal diabetes and vascular care as well as patient experience from Health Care Home-certified clinics and medical groups.

Snowden explained that it was important for MNCM to participate in this study. “While our mission is to accelerate the improvement of health by publicly reporting health care information, it’s also important to facilitate the use of the data for research that helps advance the quality of care locally and nationally,” she explained. “This project seemed ideally suited to accomplish that.”