Innovations at the Interface of Primary and Specialty Care

Innovations at the Interface of Primary and Specialty Care


$0.00 - Member/Non-Member

Number of pages:40
Year published:2016
Add to Cart

Download the Free PDF

As health systems adapt to focus increasingly on maximizing the value of care they deliver, more and more are coming to recognize the importance of improving efficiency and quality at the interface of primary care and specialty care.

With every referral, there is a risk of fragmentation of care. Poor communication leads to poor coordination, and poor coordination of care often creates gaps in quality and higher costs that undermine the goal of high-value care.

Fortunately, these are problems that can be solved, as the health systems and programs in this report demonstrate. Pioneered at three health systems in the United States – Kaiser Permanente Colorado, Mayo Clinic, and University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center – the innovations described in this report share a commitment to efficient use of provider time, teamwork, and training to improve both health outcomes and the patient experience of care.

The three profiles in this report outline:
  • Five initiatives at Kaiser Permanente Colorado: advice referrals; real-time virtual consults; primary care liaisons; population management programs within specialty care; and educational opportunities and resources for physicians.
  • Three initiatives at the Mayo Clinic: the use of electronic consultations (eConsults) among physicians; the embedding of specialty-trained nurse practitioners and physician assistants in primary care clinics (and primary care physicians in specialty departments); and the development of care process models that define roles and relationships between primary and specialty care in the management of particular conditions.
  • Details about Project ECHO at the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, which developed teleECHO clinics and community health worker training programs that aim to improve health outcomes for people living in rural and other medically underserved areas of New Mexico by more equitably distributing the specialized knowledge and health care delivery practices concentrated at academic health centers.

Download the report to discover how the innovations at these health centers:

  • Enhance the ability of primary care providers to tap into the expertise of their specialist colleagues with minimal disruption to the workflow.
  • Improve access to specialty visits for patients who need them.
  • Reduce costs of care and increase convenience for patients.
Download the Free PDF