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A New England Journal of Medicine article highlights the success of Clinica Family Health Services, a safety net clinic serving a largely low income, Latino population near Denver. Half of Clinica’s patients are uninsured. Over the last thirteen years, Clinica has implemented both the chronic care and PCMH models of care. Important lessons include the power of teams, improved access to care, and re-orienting the entire process and culture of care to center on patients. The transformation also significantly improved working conditions and job satisfaction for providers. Allowing every team member to work at the top of their license allowed clinicians to see 30 to 40% more patients per hour. More pregnant women are coming into care earlier in their pregnancies, more women are getting Pap tests, more children are getting immunizations, more diabetic patients are controlling their hemoglobin levels, and blood pressures are down among patients with hypertension. Please go to the PCMH video on Clinica’s home page – it is the best investment of 23 minutes you’ll make this week. I urge you to get to the description of patient activation – they buried the lead but it is the whole point of patient-centeredness. Highly recommended.

Ellen Andrews