How Asante Physician Partners is Transforming Primary Care

December 9, 2014   |  Tags: Blog   |  Tags: LEAN , Southern Oregon
David Gilmore, Asante Physician Partners

For the past year, Asante Physician Partners in Grants Pass, OR has been working on primary care home transformation. We reached out to David Gilmore, Senior Manager for Medical Home and Process Improvement, to learn about their experience, including challenges faced, accomplishments made, and how Lean Six Sigma has aided their transformation efforts.

Q: What is your role at Asante as it relates to the primary care home model of care?

 I am the senior manager and practice coach for our two Patient-Centered Primary Care Home (PCPCH) certified clinics, and the five more we are working to certify in 2015.

Q: How long as Asante been working on primary care home transformation? 

Asante Physician Partners, the medical group for Asante, began our primary care home transformation in October 2013 with the Grants Pass Family Medicine and Murphy Road Family Medicine Clinics. 

Q: What have been some roadblocks you have faced during the transformation? 

One of the biggest roadblocks has been the inability to obtain accurate reports on our patients' disease and/or condition status. Additionally, clinical preventive services reports for colorectal screening, diabetes management, influenza and pneummoccal vaccinations have been difficult to obtain. 

Q: How has your training in Lean Six Sigma helped guide your transformation efforts at Asante? 

Beginning with our clinic kick-off meetings, the clinic identified their current state processes compared to the OHA PCPCH criteria, and developed an action plan to improve the health of our patients and attain certification.

Now, we are focusing on using daily huddles to discover ideas to improve clinic processes. Then, using Lean rapid improvement events, we have worked to eliminate waste in our processes from a patient's perspective. Two rapid improvement events have been the new patient registration and acute visit processes.

We have also provided staff training on Lean, focusing on identifying and eliminating waste and 6S (sort, straighten, shine, standardize, sustain and safety) as a way to organize our processes. 

Q: What are some examples of tools and resources that have best assisted in your implementation efforts?

The best tool has been to develop a project plan with tasks, ownership, measurements of success and deliverable dates. Lean process improvement has also been very useful. Finally, OHA PCPCH self-assessment tools, role-based tools, and trainings have all been key in helping us implement primary care home transformation.

Q: What suggestions and advice would you offer to other medical groups working on primary care transformation? 

Go slow to go fast! In other words: be sure to plan and execute a plan to ensure success. Physician leadership and management leading the charge have both been cornerstones of our success.  



Dave Gilmore is the Senior Manager for Medical Home and Process Improvement at Asante Physician Partners in Grants Pass, OR. 






Learn more about daily huddles by watching a recording of the Institute webinar Scrubbing and Huddling >>>