The Blueprint

The Blueprint blog is the main channel that we use to let Medical Home Project participants know about upcoming events, new tools, and research.

Joining this blog's subscriber list is the easiest way to trace new information about medical homes. Subscribe today by highlighting "Your Preferences" in the navigation bar at the top of the page, clicking on "My Subscriptions," and checking the box next to "Medical Home Project" under the "Blogs and Project" section. You can also reach the "My Subscriptions" page here.

We invite you to send us links, information, dilemmas or lessons learned that you think your peers in the project might like to see on this blog. Email me at with anything you would like to see included.

As always, please email or call us if there is anything we can do to assist.

Amanda Berra

PCMH panel size trends: Introducing a new data series

Amanda Berra May 24, 2012

Industry attitudes toward PCMH panel size have changed.  Early adopters of the medical home tended to believe that they had to reduce per-provider panel size as part of the practice transformation process to hit key PCMH goals such as:

  • Giving physicians and teams with enough time to complete transformation work
  • Improving quality of care (by enabling physicians to spend more time with each patient)
  • Ensuring the sustainability of clinician workload in the long term

Today, even though all these goals remain in force, PCMH transformations typically do not include panel size reductions.  This blog post, the first in a new series on panel size data and trends, examines the evolution in perceptions of the PCMH model's ability to support sustainable growth.  

Read more »

PCMH staff rising to 'top of license'

Amanda Berra May 11, 2012

How can PCMHs deliver higher-quality care to more patients despite real-world resource constraints, including a provider shortage? The answer is not just adding more primary care providers but also dramatically transforming the roles of clinical support staff in each practice.

In our series of blog posts examining medical home staffing trends, we explored how PCMH sites are adding staff support and health systems are developing centralized care management platforms to support practice-based PCMH efforts. This post will share updated examples and data illustrating how PCMH leaders are elevating staff to "top of license" by aligning staff responsibilities to match their credentials.

Read more »

The rise of centralized care management platforms

Amanda Berra May 4, 2012

Three key trends in PCMH staff model innovation are standing out from analysis of the Medical Home Project's benchmarking data:

This post is the second in a three-part series.  Today, we will explore systems' use of centralized care management platforms—putting staff, expertise and systems into a network-level or corporate-level entity that extends support to physician practice sites, without their having to add all their own care management staff and functions.

Read more »

PCMH sites adding staff to meet goals

April 27, 2012

Optimizing the care team staff model is critical to the success of the medical home model. A high-functioning PCMH team should be able to support care coordination and quality improvement activities, provide more hands-on care for higher-risk patients, and expand the practice’s reach to a larger per-physician patient panel—while still protecting and even improving provider workload sustainability.

Recent Medical Home Project research identified three key trends in PCMH staff model innovation today.

  • Sites are adding staff support
  • Centralized care management platforms are emerging
  • Sites are increasingly applying the “top-of-license” principle in making all staff roles more robust

Over the coming weeks we will explore each of these topics through a series of blog posts, including updated data from the benchmarking initiative, beginning with the increase in PCMH staff.

Read more »

PCMHs distinguished by population management activity

Amanda Berra April 3, 2012

A key marker for an effective patient-centered medical home (PCMH) is the extent to which population management activities become a central part of day-to-day workflow. Advisory Board research finds that today’s medical homes are engaged in significantly more population-management activity than non-medical home primary care practices.

Read more »

How can PCMH impact be "inconclusive"?

Amanda Berra March 20, 2012

A new literature review says that PCMH efficacy has yet to be fully demonstrated--at a moment when positive findings about PCMH impact have been rolling in.  Why the disconnect?

Read more »

Why are hospital CEOs worried about primary care?

Amanda Berra March 2, 2012

Hospital leaders are telling us that transforming primary care to drive growth and improve patient outcomes is their most important priority. Most of the reasons are obvious—but one is not, and it's worth considering.

Read more »

State of the market in medical home contracting

Amanda Berra January 26, 2012

The market for medical home (PCMH) contracts is still evolving, leaving providers with questions on everything from "do we need to be accredited?" to "what types of incentive models are we likely to be offered—if any?"

This post provides a rundown on the current market for PCMH contracts, answers to frequently asked contracting questions, and access to the Medical Home Project’s medical home contracting resources guide.

Read more »