Good Morning Everyone,
In the effort to improve patient care and improve medical services to our nation’s heroes, our veterans, the VA adopted the practice model of “Patient Centered Care.” Patient Centered Care is exactly as it sounds. The patient is placed at the center of all their care.
In past years, when a patient felt they needed care, the patient would have to do most of the work. The patient would have to call their doctor or walk-in to their clinic. The patient would wait to be seen. When the patient was finished with their doctor, the patient would have to call to schedule any follow-up appointments. Take for example a patient who has stomach problems. The patient would see their doctor. The doctor may recommend the have an x-ray, a CT scan, lab work, and they follow-up with the Gastrointestinal service. The patient would have to schedule all their additional visits on their own.
Patient Centered Care not only focuses on the patient but also includes the patient’s family. The VA now wants to do everything they can for the patient such as coordinating the follow-up visits; coordinating the additional services requested by the doctor; and informing or educating family members not only the status of the veteran but educating and informing them on how to care for the veteran.
An article was recently published in the Journal of the American Medical Association describing some of the VA’s efforts on this paradigm shift. The following is a link to the article.