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Chest. 2010 Jan;137(1):200-4. doi: 10.1378/chest.09-0060. Epub 2009 Nov 20.

Specialists/subspecialists and the patient-centered medical home.

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American College of Physicians, 25 Massachusetts Ave NW, Suite 700, Washington, DC 20001, USA.


This article provides an overview of the Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) care model. It provides a history and definition of the concept, a discussion of its growing acceptance by the health-care community, and a review of current public and public-private demonstration projects testing the concept. The role of specialty/subspecialty practices within the PCMH model is described, with a focus on the potential for these practices to serve as a PCMH for a subgroup of patients or, alternatively, as a PCMH "neighbor" that interfaces effectively with PCMH practices. The authors conclude that the model for effective connections between the PCMH and specialty/subspecialty practices requires further development, including the cross-specialty establishment of guidelines and processes regarding referrals, information flow, transitions in care, and accountability. The efforts of the American College of Physicians' Council of Subspecialty Societies PCMH Workgroup to further develop this model are described. The authors encourage involvement from all interested stakeholders to ensure that the issues and challenges identified are addressed through collaboration and consensus based on available evidence.

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