SOURCE: The Joint Commission

The Joint Commission

August 19, 2011 11:30 ET

Joint Commission Awards First Primary Care Medical Home Option to AltaMed

OAKBROOK TERRACE, IL--(Marketwire - Aug 19, 2011) - AltaMed Health Services Corporation in Los Angeles is the first organization in the country to earn the new Primary Care Medical Home (PCMH) designation for Joint Commission accredited ambulatory care organizations.

The Joint Commission conducted its first on-site survey for the PCMH option July 11, 2011, at AltaMed Health Services Corporation, evaluating compliance with standards related to how effectively the primary care clinician and the interdisciplinary team work in partnership with the patient to provide comprehensive, coordinated and patient-centered care.

"The Joint Commission commends AltaMed Health Services Corporation on being the first organization to be recognized under this option and for seeking the Primary Care Medical Home designation in order to foster better outcomes for its patients. Pursuing the designation illustrates their commitment to deliver primary care in a comprehensive, coordinated and accessible model," says Michael Kulczycki, executive director, Ambulatory Care Accreditation Program, The Joint Commission. "Attaining this designation signifies that the services at AltaMed Health Services Corporation have met the critical elements to achieve long-term success in improving outcomes. It is the best signal to the community that the quality of care provided is effectively managed to ensure their patients receive timely and appropriate treatment."

"This Joint Commission designation recognizes the hard work AltaMed employees engage in every day as they put our patients at the center of our organization. Following these practices also gives us a framework to take our organization to the next level and helps create a culture of excellence," says Cástulo de la Rocha, president and CEO, Alta Med Health Services Corporation.

The Joint Commission's PCMH option, which was launched in July 2011, focuses on how effectively the primary care clinician and the interdisciplinary team work in partnership with the patient. Other key factors of this option include continuity of care; the provision of comprehensive, coordinated and patient-centered care; and education and self-management by the patient.

Patients benefit from this model because they have increased access to the services of the clinician and interdisciplinary team; the care provided by other clinicians and facilities is tracked and coordinated; and evidence based treatment protocols guide their care.

This accreditation option complements the Ambulatory Care Accreditation Program and is consistent with the new federal health care reform efforts to improve health outcomes and the coordination, quality and efficiency of health care services. It is designed to combine the improvements in quality of care and patient safety achieved through accreditation with the opportunity for increased reimbursement from third party payers when the additional requirements of a PCMH are met and the designation is awarded.

For more information about the PCMH option, please visit www.jointcommission.org/PCMH or contact Michael Kulczycki at 630.792.5290, or mkulczycki@jointcommission.org.

Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission seeks to continuously improve health care for the public, in collaboration with other stakeholders, by evaluating health care organizations and inspiring them to excel in providing safe and effective care of the highest quality and value. The Joint Commission evaluates and accredits more than 19,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States, including more than 10,300 hospitals and home care organizations, and more than 6,500 other health care organizations that provide long term care, behavioral health care, laboratory and ambulatory care services. The Joint Commission also provides certification of more than 2,000 disease-specific care programs, primary stroke centers, and health care staffing services. An independent, not-for-profit organization, The Joint Commission is the nation's oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. Learn more about The Joint Commission at www.jointcommission.org.

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