Good news on SIM and PCMH national standards

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The new SIM Practice Transformation Workgroup met last night for the first time and support for patient-centered medical home national standards was strong. Advocates have been strong supporters of national standards for PCMHs over a CT-specific program. There is growing evidence that PCMHs that meet national standards perform better on quality, enhance access to care and control costs. Advocates developed a Q&A to answer questions and address misinformation about PCMH national standards. The group agreed to tie the SIM medical home program to NCQA standards. The vote was overwhelmingly in favor of NCQA, with no votes recorded against.  NCQA is the leader in PCMH recognition – certifying 80% of PCMHs nationally. Practices would have to commit to an NCQA PMCH application and recognition to participate in SIM’s glide path program. Only new, non-PCMH practices will receive PCMH assistance from SIM, so practices that currently have certification, NCQA or another standard, will not be affected. There was strong interest in adding other, CT-specific standards to the standard – the NCQA Plus option. The committee will pursue those options with NCQA. The decision now goes to the SIM Steering Committee in their Thursday meeting – where there has been strong opposition to national PMCH standards.