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A crucial starting point for enabling overburdened PCPs to move toward enhanced primary care delivery is to leverage mid-level providers (nurse practitioners and physician assistants) to bolster PCP productivity and patient access.
Three Main Options for Incorporating Mid-level Providers into Primary Care Practices
Early findings from our primary care/medical home benchmarking initiative provide a quantitative snapshot of medical homes investing in more clinical support staff per physician and taking on new site-level functions.
PCMH Staff Data: Benchmarks Suggest Transformation in Staff Model, Site Functions
Despite a popular perception equating medical homes with smaller panel sizes, odds are that most medical home sites will have to find ways to treat more patients than the typical primary care site does today. That doesn't mean the medical home can't deliver greater sustainability from the provider perspective, as well as more meaningful patient interactions. It just means that for most sites, the key levers will be increased IT use, interdisciplinary team approaches, and an expanded role for advanced practice practitioners -- not long-term panel size reductions.
Panel Size Expansion in the Medical Home