Effects of Patient-Centered Medical Home Attributes on Patients’ Perceptions of Quality in Federally Supported Health Centers

PURPOSE: We sought to assess patients’ ratings of patient-centered medical home (PCMH) attributes and overall quality of care within federally supported health centers.

METHODS: Data were collected through the 2009 Health Center Patient Survey (n = 4,562), which consisted of in-person interviews and included a nationally representative sample of patients seen in health centers. Quality measures included patients’ perceptions of overall quality of services, perceptions of quality of clinician advice/treatment, and likelihood of referring friends and relatives to the health center. PCMH attributes included (1) access to care getting to health center, (2) access to care during visit, (3) patient-centered communication with health care clinicians, (4) patient-centered communication with support staff, (5) self-management support for chronic conditions, (6) self-management support for behavioral risks, and (7) comprehensive preventive care. Bivariate analysis and logistic regressions were used to examine associations between patients’ perceptions of PCMH attributes and patient-reported quality of care.

RESULTS: Eighty-four percent of patients reported excellent/very good overall quality of services, 81% reported excellent/very good quality of clinician care, and 84% were very likely to refer friends and relatives. Higher patient ratings on the access to care and patient-centered communication attributes were associated with higher odds of patient-reported high quality of care on the 3 outcome measures.

CONCLUSIONS: More than 80% of patients perceived high quality of care in health centers. PCMH attributes related to access to care and communication were associated with greater likelihood of patients reporting high-quality care.

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