Rachelle KhalafDirector, Public Relations and Communications
Kelsey-Seybold garners Level 3 Medical Home designation and ACO Pilot nomination
Houston (June 21, 2011) – The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) recently recognized Kelsey-Seybold Clinic, Houston's premier community-based multispecialty physician group, for meeting current standards for national quality initiatives centered on the foundation of coordinated patient care.
Sixteen Kelsey-Seybold Clinic locations were named Level 3 Medical Homes. The Level 3 Medical Home is the highest level of designation awarded by the NCQA. The patient-centered medical home (PCMH) is a model of care emphasizing care coordination and communication to transform primary care into "what patients want it to be."
Research shows that medical homes can lead to higher quality and lower costs, and improve patients' and providers' reported experiences of care. The PCMH identifies practices that promote partnerships between individual patients and their personal clinicians, instead of treating patient care as the sum of several episodic office visits. Each patient's care is tended to by clinician-led healthcare teams, who provide for all the patient's health care needs and coordinate treatments across the healthcare system. Medical homes demonstrate the benchmarks of patient-centered care, including open access to appointment scheduling, expanded hours and appropriate use of proven health information systems.
Kelsey-Seybold's PCMH means that primary care physicians offer tools to improve their patients' health through prevention, disease intervention and effective care management.
Additionally, as the healthcare debate continues, many organizations, like NCQA and the American Medical Group Association, have issued statements that the Accountable Care Organization's model of care offers a proven solution to the growing healthcare crisis and rising costs of medical care. The NCQA selected 10 medical groups across the country, which included Kelsey-Seybold Clinic, to participate in their ACO pilot program. The program was designed to aid the NCQA in the development of ACO qualifications set to be released in July 2011.
"These acknowledgments confirm that Kelsey-Seybold is a medical organization focused on delivering coordinated care to patients." said Dr. Spencer Berthelsen, Chairman and Managing Director, Kelsey-Seybold. "We have been practicing this model of care for more than 60 years and we know it works. Receiving the support and recognition from national organizations like NCQA, which analyzes healthcare from all vantage points, further validates the effectiveness of our model of care."
Kelsey-Seybold Receives Highest Level of Recognition by NCQA's for Physician Practice Connections® – Patient-Centered Medical Home™ (PPC®-PCMH™)
All eligible 16 Kelsey-Seybold Clinics were named as Level 3 Medical Homes by the NCQA's Physician Practice Connections® – Patient-Centered Medical Home™ (PPC®-PCMH™) program.
Dr. Berthelsen adds, "Primary care physicians are best equipped to manage care for patients and ensure patients get the preventive care they need at the right time. At Kelsey-Seybold, our physicians help develop and maintain lasting relationships with their patients."
To achieve a Level 3 recognition, healthcare organizations must meet and exceed rigorous guidelines. A Level 3 recognition depends on the overall scoring and compliance with all 10 "must pass" elements that include:
Kelsey-Seybold Clinic locations with Level 3 PCMH designations include:
Download NCQA's PCMH brochure to learn more about the PCMH model of care.
NCQA's Accountable Care Pilot Test
In February 2011, Kelsey-Seybold Clinic participated in a month-long ACO pilot test with the NCQA to test ACO standards for NCQA's ACO accreditation program later this year.
As defined in the Affordable Care and Patient Protection Act, ACOs are provider-based organizations that take responsibility for meeting the healthcare needs of a defined population with the goal of simultaneously improving health, improving patient experience and reducing per capita costs. By coordinating and integrating care, policymakers hope ACOs can simplify the care process for patients, enhance quality, improve efficiency and reduce costs.
Kelsey-Seybold Clinic was one of only 10 multispecialty group practices selected nationally to participate in this pilot, and the only one based in the southern states. NCQA selected partners based on size and geographic region.
"The NCQA is dedicated to improving healthcare quality and is a central figure in driving improvement throughout the healthcare system," said NCQA President Margaret E. O'Kane. "Engagement by providers in our recognition and accreditation programs is integral to the vitality of our healthcare system and we commend those who are working towards quality improvements and addressing the growing cost of healthcare in our country."
Dr. Berthelsen added, "Kelsey-Seybold is recognized and respected at a national level as a benchmark for ACOs in the United States. We have met and exceeded stringent criteria for providing our patients with quality care."
Kelsey-Seybold Clinic is Houston's premier multispecialty group practice, founded in 1949 by Dr. Mavis Kelsey in Houston's renowned Texas Medical Center. More than 650 physicians and allied health professionals practice at 36 locations in the Greater Houston area. Kelsey-Seybold offers quality medical care in 65 medical specialties. The organization operates the largest freestanding Ambulatory Surgery Center in the state of Texas and offers state-of-the-art Varian TrueBeam and Varian Edge radiation therapy technology at a nationally accredited Cancer Center. An accredited Sleep Center, comprehensive laboratory services, advanced imaging and diagnostics, 24 onsite Kelsey pharmacies and one specialty pharmacy, and MyKelseyOnline, a secure web portal, are part of its comprehensive offerings. Kelsey-Seybold partners with major insurers to offer value-based commercial health plans. KelseyCare Advantage, a Medicare Advantage plan offered to Houston-area beneficiaries and affiliated with Kelsey-Seybold Clinic, has achieved the coveted 5-out-of-5-star rating from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid for seven consecutive years.
Kelsey-Seybold has been recognized by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) as the nation’s first accredited Accountable Care Organization and a Patient-Centered Medical Home. Kelsey-Seybold has many physicians in the Greater Houston area certified for excellence in diabetes and heart and stroke care by the NCQA. In addition to these recognitions, Kelsey-Seybold is home to a nationally accredited Breast Diagnostic Center and Endoscopy Center.
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