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These past few months, I have been fortunate enough to have the opportunity to be a student intern with the Patient-Centered Primary Care Institute (PCPCI) as a part of completing my master’s degree in Public Administration: Health Administration at Portland State University.
Do you or your team experience any of the following in your workplace?: Extreme exhaustion, feeling low, reduced performance, irritability or impatience. These are all signs of burnout and can wreak havoc not only on the well-being of individuals, but entire organizations.
I was fortunate to attend Be the Change: Strategies for Health Care Transformation on October 13, 2015. The meeting was a four-state, “Mega-Learning and Action Networks” event, hosted by HealthInsight Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization. The key takeaway? Health care transformation is not easy, but it is inevitable, and it is our responsibility to be agents of change.
The OCN has been dedicated to providing information about the nursing workforce in Oregon for the past 13 years. We are small, with two staff members, but have a board of directors consisting of 12 nurses from diverse backgrounds who provide us focus and direction. For instance, members of our board include representatives from the Oregon Nurses Association, the Northwest Organization of Nurse Executives, and the Oregon State Board of Nursing.
Behavioral health integration is an enormous part of successful patient-centered primary care. In 2013, there were an estimated 43.8 million adults aged 18 or older in the U.S. with a diagnosable mental illness or 18.5 percent of U.S. adults (National Institute of Mental Health [NIMH]). Integrating mental health professionals into primary care settings to help screen and treat those suffering from depression can aid in easing the debilitating mental, physical, and monetary cost to individual’s lives (Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality [AHRQ], 2012).
The Patient-Centered Primary Care Home (PCPCH) Program is off and running with the new 3 STAR designation, intended only for high-functioning, truly transformed patient-centered primary care homes. And now Oregon has its first pediatric 3 STAR practice, Metropolitan Pediatrics’ Northwest in Portland.
According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Diabetes is a serious public health concern in the United States. It affects 25.8 million people, or 8.3% of the population. Nearly 19 million people are diagnosed with the disease, but more concerning is the estimated 7 million people who have diabetes but are undiagnosed. In addition, another 79 million people are estimated to have pre-diabetes, a condition that puts people at increased risk for the disease. Among U.S. residents aged 65 and older, 10.9 million (26.9%) were diagnosed with diabetes in 2010.
I believe that to improve you must have a way to track what you are (or are not) doing; it is essential to really know your strengths and weaknesses. Northwest Primary Care has worked hard to do this, and from my experience, it is really paying off. While I believe that having good data is a key component, there are many factors that contribute to our success.