What is Practice Transformation?

Hi, I'm Larry Mauksch and I'm a behavioral health provider who's spent 34 years working in primary care. I've devoted my career to helping study, write about, and participate in primary care transformation and in the integration of behavioral health in a way that makes healthcare most effective. 

What is practice transformation? It's actually quite an undertaking for a healthcare system, a clinic, to change the way it operates, to incorporate teams, to really build relationships with patients, to follow them over time, to make sure that the whole person health of that patient and that patient's family is addressed. 

In this portal, there are resources that will help you with practice transformation. These resources include addressing the quadruple aim. That is defining the population that your providers care for, maximizing the experience of the patient and the families that you serve, reducing the per capita cost of care by adopting financial models that really limit waste and enhance quality of care, and constructing work systems that enhance the personal and professional health of the people who work as part of your team. 

Now there are key ingredients that are worthwhile thinking about that you can learn about in this portal. First and foremost amongst those is practice transformation demands effective, engaged leadership. These are folks, more than one usually, who have vision, organization, motivation, and the capacity to listen and to act. Improvement to innovation needs to be data driven. We need to find ways to measure what we're doing to know that it makes a difference. 

We need to provide a focus on the populations that we serve and a term there is impanelment. We need to link each patient to a primary care clinician and know the needs of those folks that we serve. We need to have effective teams. These teams are essential to achieve each of the four parts of the quadruple aim. We need to have effective interactions with the patients and the families that we serve. 

Ultimately, it's the patients and the families who must be invested in their care, resulting from informed interactions that build trust and respect. Our patients need to have prompt access to care. If we don't give them access, then we compromise quality and cost. Lastly, we need to think about ways to provide comprehensive care management and coordination. Effective medical homes transformed healthcare systems, used mechanisms that prevent patients and family needs from falling between the cracks, falling between the cracks in the system, in the larger healthcare system, and in the community. 

The future really is effective primary care teams that have extra energy to really pursue new ideas, to constantly change and adapt and figure out ways to make the best use of every healthcare dollar.