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New international health survey of sicker adults: Those with a medical home fare better
Date:11/8/2011

New York, NY, November 9, 2011Chronically and seriously ill adults who received care from a medical homean accessible primary care practice that helps coordinate carewere less likely to report medical errors, test duplication, and other care coordination failures, according to a new Commonwealth Fund international survey of patients' experiences in the U.S. and 10 other high-income countries. Published as a Health Affairs "Web First" article, the study also found that patients connected with medical homes had better relationships with their doctors and rated their care more highly.

The 2011 survey of more than 18,000 sicker adults in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States included people who reported they were in fair or poor health, had surgery or had been hospitalized in the past two years, or had received care for a serious or chronic illness, injury, or disability in the past year. The study identified patients as having a medical home if they reported having a regular source of care that knows their medical history, is accessible, and helps coordinate care received from other providers.

Sicker adults in the U.K. and Switzerland were most likely to have a medical home, with nearly three-quarters connected to practices that have characteristics of a medical home, compared to about 33 percent to 65 percent in the other nine countries. U.K. and Swiss patients also reported more positive health care experiences than sicker adults in the other countries: they were more likely to be able to get a same- or next-day appointment when sick and to have easy access to after-hours care, and they were less likely to experience poorly coordinated care.

Sicker adults in the U.S. stood out for having the highest rates of problems paying medical bills and going without needed care because of the cost. Forty-two percent reported not visiting a do
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Contact: Mary Mahon
mm@cmwf.org
212-606-3853
Commonwealth Fund
Source:Eurekalert

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