Navigation Links
Californians with 'medical home' more likely to get flu shots, preventive treatment

Too many cooks may spoil a recipe, and too many doctors may give you the flu.

That's the takeaway from a new study by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research that found that Californians who jump from provider to provider rather than seeing a regular doctor who coordinates their care may be less likely to get the kind of preventive treatment that protects against the flu and flare ups in their chronic conditions.

Specifically, the study used data from the 2009 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS) to estimate whether the approximately 4.76 million California adults with chronic conditions such as diabetes, asthma and heart disease had three key characteristics of "medical home" care. Those three characteristics are:

  • The patient saw a regular doctor over time rather than switching from provider to provider.

  • This regular doctor developed an individual treatment plan for the patient.

  • The doctor coordinated the patient's care.

The result? Californians who had all three of these characteristics were the most likely to get a regular flu shot, compared with those without a usual source of care. They were also more likely to have seen their doctor five or more times in the past year and to have called their doctor with a question about their care. Additionally, they were the most confident about their ability to manage their health.

"Seeing the same doctor over time builds familiarity, trust and confidence for both provider and patient," said Nadereh Pourat, the UCLA center's director of research and lead author of the study. "And if that doctor takes a coordinated approach to their patients' care, there seems to be a big payoff in terms of better health for their patients."

Preventive care is a key tenet of federal health care reform, under which millions of California residents will be eligible to gain coverage in 2014. The success of this coverage expansion in improving access partly depends on the more efficient delivery of care to everyone, but particularly those with chronic conditions who require more concentrated care management and whose conditions, if not treated early and consistently, could prove costly for the overall health care system.

"Giving patients, especially those with complex conditions, a medical place to call 'home' may not only keep them healthier but may keep our health system solvent," Pourat said.

Among the study's findings:

Flu shots

The rate of flu shots, an essential preventive measure for those with chronic conditions, was highest among adults who reported having all three key characteristics of a medical home, at 59 percent. In comparison, only 26 percent of adults with chronic conditions without any of the three characteristics received the flu shot.

Regular care

Adults who had all the characteristics of a medical home were more likely (50 percent) to have had five or more doctor visits over the past year than adults who reported having two of the three (43 percent) one of the three (31 percent) or none of the three characteristics (30 percent). Adults who reported having none of the three characteristics were least likely to have seen a provider in the past year (22 percent). Call and response

Adults with chronic conditions who had all three characteristics of a medical home were the most likely to have called the doctor's office in the past year (46 percent), compared with those who had two (34 percent), one (25 percent) or no (7 percent) medical home key characteristics. They were also the most likely to report getting a call back from their provider.

Left out

Uninsured Medi-Cal beneficiaries, the poor, Latinos, Asian-Americans and those receiving care in clinics or from alternative and non-conventional providers were the least likely to report having a "medical home."

Currently, many Californians with chronic conditions see a doctor only in response to a flare-up of their condition, and they are often left to coordinate their own care among a bewildering variety of specialist medical providers. The "medical home" model, said Pourat, takes that burden off the patient and ensures that conditions are treated in a holistic and preventive manner, rather than as health emergencies arise.

"We must move away from this expensive model of 'sick care' and move to a prevention-based health care system," said Dr. Robert K. Ross, CEO and president of The California Endowment, which funded the policy brief. "The goal should be to keep people healthy, rather than only responding when people are sick. Having a regular and consistent source of care can help prevent Californians from developing chronic health conditions, which comprise the majority of health care spending in the state."

The authors recommended promotion of the medical home model to those expected to participate in Medi-Cal or purchase coverage through Covered California, the health-care benefit exchange. Specifically, efforts targeting groups least likely to have a medical home, such as the poor, Latinos and Asian-Americans, could prove effective, they said.


Contact: Gwen Driscoll
University of California - Los Angeles

Related medicine news :

1. Recessions bite: Nearly 4 million Californians struggled to put food on table during downturn
2. Denver Weight Loss Clinic Continues Expansion in Colorado with a New Medical Weight Loss Center with the Potential to Help Thousands Lose Weight
3. Advanced Male Medical Center Introduces Testosterone Cream
4. Living Well Medical, a Top NYC Medical Facility, Welcomes Acclaimed Orthopedist Dr. Randall Victor Ehrlich, M.D.
5. Education is Afoot at The Happiest Place on Earth - California Podiatric Medical Association
6. ACE Comprehensive Travel Medical Insurance Announces a New Pre-existing Medical Condition Coverage Policy for Visitors to the United States
7. Nobles Medical Technologies II's NobleStitch EL begins Sales in Europe
8. Kids Poisoned by Medical Marijuana, Study Finds
9. The analysis of medical images is improved to facilitate the study of psychotic disorders
10. Reaches Out to More People in Need of Low-Price Medical Supplies Through Valpak
11. Just Home Medical Debuts Updated Selection of Overbed Tables
Post Your Comments:
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... ... Growth in medical payments per workers’ compensation claim in Louisiana slowed from 2011 ... according to a recent study by the Workers Compensation Research Institute (WCRI). , ... per claim with more than seven days of lost time continued to be higher ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... Wayland, MA (PRWEB) , ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... adults has a tattoo — a number even greater among Millennials (a whopping one ... there are more and more people who are dissatisfied with their ink. In fact, ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... technicians must mark the film for accurate interpretation by the radiologist. The marking ... an inventor from Sacramento, Calif., has found a way to alleviate this problem. ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... 01, 2015 , ... Next IT Healthcare, the leader in ... this year’s Fierce Innovation Awards: Healthcare Edition, an awards program from the publisher ... in the category of Digital Solutions for its innovative, industry-leading product, Alme Health ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... Effective Post-Affiliation Integration ,” addresses a main “pain point” for merging or aligning ... results, once a deal is signed. This quick-read guidance suggests that failing ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/1/2015)... , Dec. 1, 2015 Relmada Therapeutics, Inc. ... treatment of chronic pain, announced today that the company will ... be held December 1-3 at the Luxe Sunset Boulevard Hotel ... Traversa , CEO of Relmada Therapeutics, will present on Thursday, ... Time). . Please register at least 10 ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... 2015 CytRx Corporation (NASDAQ: CYTR ), ... today announced that it has reached its enrollment target ... 3 clinical trial of aldoxorubicin in patients with previously ... be completed in Q1 2016. The Phase 3 trial is ... Protocol Assessment from the FDA at 79 sites in ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... , Dec. 1, 2015  Today, ... the launch of CareFront, a first-of-its-kind population health ... diagnosed with cancer. Designed to be built into ... cancer patients with resources for their care and ... program also offers tools to help patients understand ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: