2014 News & Events

Community Partners in Obesity Management:  New AHRQ Toolkit
Implementing change into a busy primary care practices takes intentional time and effort. This new toolkit from AHRQ is intended to support clinicians in looking at their pactice, reaching out to community resources, developing sustainable links, and exercising new strategies and tools aimed at increasing patent engagement.

Although the YMCA, as a key partner in this project, played a critical role in developing the toolkit, the lessons and examples are intended to be translatable to any community resource and any practice willing to take the extra step to make it happen.

Assessing Patient and Practice Member Perspectives When Evaluating Quality
After the Chronic Care Model has been implemented, is it possible to compare patient and provider team views on quality of care?  A new study provides the first published report exploring this question by administering the Assessment of Chronic Illness Care (ACIC) and Patient Assessment of Chronic Illness Care (PACIC) scales in 39 primary care settings.

Health care settings where elements of the Chronic Care Model have been implemented are likely to have prepared, proactive practice teams, and informed, engaged patients who become active members of their health care teams and accept shared responsibility for their chronic illness care.  However, little is known as to whether primary care teams’ perceptions of how well they have implemented the CCM corresponds with their patients’ own experience of chronic illness care.  Improving patient experiences of care is a priority within the National Quality Strategy as reflected in recent multi-payer initiatives that include the use of patient experience results in determining provider payment

Commenting on "Alignment of patient and primary care practice member perspectives of chronic illness care: a cross-sectional analysis", co-author Michael Parchman said:  “We did this study to see if patients’ experiences of chronic illness care align with what clinicians and staff say about the type of chronic illness care they are able to deliver.”

Study findings show the ACIC and PACIC provide complementary but relatively unique assessments of how well clinical services are aligned with the CCM.

March 2014 presentation:  The Future of Primary Care
“Quality improvement is not a project, it is an approach to how you do your work, and it is either continuous or not at all...we need to reestablish primary care as the foundation of American health care."  - Ed Wagner

On March 10th, MacColl Director Emeritus Ed Wagner delivered a keynote address at the 15th Annual International Summit on Improving Patient Care in the Office Practice and the Community in Washington, DC.  Tune into this archived video not only to enjoy Ed's keen sense of humor but for updates about what we're learning right now from front-line primary care practitioners through our PCT-LEAP national project.

  • View "The Future of Primary Care" on the Institute for Healthcare Improvement's IHI TV website (log-in required).


Aligning Forces for Quality Communities Empowering Patients to Own Their Health
Every person living with chronic illness makes decisions and engages in behaviors that affect their health (self-management). Self-management support is one of the six Chronic Care Model elements, and refers to empowering and preparing patients to manage their health and health care.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s “Quality Field Notes” series presents key lessons learned by regional alliances of clinicians, patients, and payers in Aligning Forces for Quality (AF4Q) communities. Both self-management and self-management support are at the heart of AF4Q communities, with patients engaged at all levels.

This March 2014 issue brief looks at the ways that five AF4Q communities used transparency, collaboration, and engagement to involve patients in their own care.

Case study highlights

  • The Greater Detroit Area Health Council Cardiac Disease Prevention Exercise program encouraged collaboration among patients, utilized the power of peer support, and assisted people living with diabetes in learning to better manage their own health.
  • Although doctors hesitated in making their practices transparent, involving Patient Partners in the Humboldt and South Central Pennsylvania communities helped consumers understand how the system works, generated valuable insights, and paved the way to better processes.
  • Working with three local purchasers, the Washington Health Alliance launched the “Own Your Own Health” campaign in Washington state’s AF4Q community  to empower patients through education, focusing on topics such as the importance of having a primary care physician, quality health care, and tips for finding trustworthy health information online.  These materials have been circulated to more than 120,000 employees and labor union trust members.
  • The Massachusetts Health Quality Partners community dedicated time and resources in creating its Patient and Public Engagement Council, a process vital for culture change.  MHQP, with nearly 500 primary care offices in Massachusetts, developed the first-ever rating of patient experiences in Consumer Reports.

The MacColl Center team provides technical assistance to AF4Q communities.


The 2014 Wagner Symposium:  A close look at the extension center model
On January 31st, the ICIC team and MacColl staff hosted the first annual MacColl Center Symposium in Seattle.  Featuring guest speaker Craig Jones, MD, of the Vermont Blueprint for Health, the event brought a panel of national experts and a select group of participants together to explore ways that primary health extension programs may serve as a framework to support better care throughout our state.

Lyndee Knox, PhD, CEO of L.A. Net Community Health Resource Network and Dr. Art Kaufman of NM Health Extension Rural Offices presented models from their states to the assembly of representatives from Washington state agencies, insurance plans, higher education, community health centers, and large and small group practices.

"Primary Health Extenstion Programs:  Current Models & Future Directions" was funded by the Group Health Foundation through the Ed Wagner Health Care Transformation Endowment.

Pictured, left to right:  Susan Bennett, Brian Austin, Michael Parchman, Judith Schaefer, Ed Wagner, Katie Coleman, Craig Jones, and Karin Johnson.


New research shows the Chronic Care Model helps improve teen asthma symptoms
A team at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center recently conducted a quality improvement effort guided by the Chronic Care Model that is believed to be the first of its kind.  Exclusively targeting teenagers, the initiative resulted in dramatically improved symptom control and outcomes.

New Principles Supporting Clinical Care Teams
A recent American College of Physicians Position paper in the Annals of Internal Medicine offers a framework for discussing the principles and benefits of moving US health care delivery in the direction of true team-based care.  Providing policy guidance that can help clinical teams organize care processes and clinical responsibilities, it also emphasizes a patient-centered approach for treatment and coordination.