Medical home pilot shows reduction in ER visits

Preliminary results from United HealthCare’s medical home pilot indicate that the medical home has achieved one of its goals - reducing hospital emergency-room visits.

According to an article on AZCentral.com, a preliminary comparison between the medical home patients, and non-medical home patients suggest that necessary emergency-room visits are 4.5 percent lower and unnecessary emergency-room visits are 22.5 percent lower for the medical-home group.

The medical-home concept encourages doctors and their patients to better manage chronic health conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure. The payoff is that patients are less likely to land in a hospital emergency department - the most expensive place to provide health care.

(Sources: The Advisory Board Daily Briefing, http://advisory.com, August 26, 2010; AZCentral.com, http://azcentral.com, August 22, 2010)