Apr. 14, 2011 (PR Newswire) --
WASHINGTON, April 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- As health care providers nationwide consider whether to adopt a model of care called the patient-centered medical home, they face a critical question regarding the implementation of this innovative approach: at already-stretched primary care practices, who will take on all the additional tasks the model requires?
For many, an effective answer is nurses serving as Physician Office-based Health coaches (POHCs). POHCs play a key role in patient engagement, cross-continuum care management, additional outreach, and other important functions in the new model of care.
POHCs also serve on the frontlines of chronic disease management, addressing the gaps in the current ambulatory care delivery system. Finally, POHCs improve office workflow, motivate patients to improve self-care, oversee disease registries, and conduct pre-visit chart reviews. Through these functions, they can dramatically improve patient outcomes.
In today's environment of innovation, it is more important than ever that primary care practices ensure the quality of care delivered by nurses serving as health coaches. A new collaboration between The Advisory Board Company and Mercy Clinics is making that possible through an enhanced certification program for this key role.
Since 2008, over 100 health coaches have received POHC certification from a pioneering institution in this terrain: Mercy Clinics, a 150-physician multispecialty clinic in Des Moines, Iowa.