"Even the best EHR operated by a stand-alone PCP only has a record of what that physician does. Our member health record includes every bit of claims-based medical information that we have. So if a patient get a prescription from another doctor, has an ER visit, or visits another provider, the PCHM doctor knows it. That's very useful information."
Through the portal physicians may also access the complete care plan tool to develop a longitudinal, ongoing record of everything that has been done to a patient as part of a care plan, including notes from other providers.
There is also the searchlight function, which provides a view of a panel's entire patient base to identify gaps in care or the areas where they are doing well.
"It's a rich benefit that doctors can mine to improve their performance," says Sullivan.
CareFirst recently announced the selection of several organizations to conduct comprehensive evaluations of its PCMH. A joint team from Harvard University, Brandeis University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology was selected, along with a team from George Mason University.
The groups will conduct qualitative and quantitative analysis of the PCMH program. "We want that independent evaluation to capture what's working and how we can improve, states Sullivan.