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How One Health System Is Shifting From Volume to Value

Health system provides continuum of care to underserved populations; providing help for doctors

FRIDAY, April 22, 2016 (HealthDay News) — ACCESS Health System, which operates 36 health centers, is transitioning to a patient-centered, physician-friendly health system that provides a continuum of care to underserved populations, according to the American Medical Association (AMA).

ACCESS uses a team-based care model to coordinate care across their health centers. They serve medically underserved and the most vulnerable communities, and screen for issues such as food insecurity, housing, and behavioral issues. Patients can schedule appointments, view their medical records, and communicate with physicians; their records are fully available to each physician they see at any of the 36 health centers. Close to 50,000 patients are using the patient portal to communicate with their physicians. Comprehensive training has been provided for staff and physicians and every process in the organization has been reviewed.

ACCESS has also taken steps to address burnout experienced by physicians. These include listening to physicians talk about issues; involving many departments in the quality structure; optimizing processes so as not to waste the time of the physician; facilitating flexibility with scheduling; and implementing a teamwork structure.

“Our interactions with the patients are not limited to the visits,” said Jairo Mejia, M.D., chief medical officer at ACCESS, according to the AMA. “We have a constant permanent interaction with them through our [patient portal].”

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