VA HBPC Provides Model For Medicare, Patient-Centered Medical Homes

Kyle Murphy | EHR Intelligence | November 5, 2012

Based on its ability to manage patient care and costs effectively, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) program for providing home-based primacy care (HBPC) should serve as a model for improving similar Medicare programs, according to a recent report by the American Action Forum. The HBPC represents one of several methods implemented by the VA over the last two decades to curtail the cost and inefficiencies associated with providing care for more than eight million veterans. “The VA healthcare system has undertaken a transformation in pursuit of higher quality in the past 20 years. Across-the-board reforms including electronic health records, performance measures, and decentralization have improved the system substantially,” writes Emily Egan. As a result of these changes, the VA has outperformed Medicare, which it had previously trailed.

The VA HBPC program offers medical services to patients suffering from debilitating chronic illness who require frequent care provided in a home setting no more than an average of three times each month. Run by the VA Office of Geriatrics and Extended Care, the program brings together the care team of physicians nurses, and among specialist providers in order to integrate care and enable coordination of care between members of the care team as well as the patient’s family.

Compared to Medicare home-based care model, the 116 sites in HBPC have demonstrated improvements in four major areas...