Study Shows High Satisfaction Ratings Among Health Center Patients

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A new study shows that more than 80 percent of Community Health Center patients  report that receiving high quality health care.  Patient responses in the study, published in the November/December issue of the Annals of Family Medicine, showed that 84 percent of  patients reported excellent/very good overall quality of services, 81 percent reported excellent/very good quality of clinician care, and 84 percent were very likely to refer friends and relatives.

Also, patient-centered medical home (PCMH) features related to access to care and communication were tied with a greater likelihood that patients would report high-quality care overall.  PCMH is a model of care that provides comprehensive, coordinated, and patient-centered health care. You can read more about PCMH on the NACHC website here.

The study, Effects of Patient-Centered Medical Home Attributes on Patients’ Perceptions of Quality in Federally Supported Health Centers, is the first national study to examine how patients viewed PCMH attributes in a safety net setting.   Researchers focused on data from the 2009 Health Center Patient Survey and the PCMH principles of:

  • Access to care getting to health center
  • Access to care during visit
  • Patient-centered communication with health care clinicians
  • Patient-centered communication with support staff
  • Self-management support of chronic conditions
  • Self –management support for behavioral risks
  • Comprehensive preventative care

According to an article in Medscape Medical News by Marcia Frellick, “the high satisfaction ratings are notable, according to the researchers, given that low-income and uninsured patients across the United States generally rate their care much lower. For example, in the Commonwealth Fund’s 2010 Biennial Health Insurance Survey, only 35% of low-income adults and 27% of uninsured adults reported excellent or very good quality of care.”

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