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Saint Peter’s healthcare initiative goes from pilot to fully implemented

Saint Peter’s Healthcare System, New Brunswick, N.J., has identified and enrolled more than 210 participants in its patient-centered medical home for high-need uninsured and  underinsured adults with diabetes mellitus and hypertension who reside in central New Jersey, according to a news release. Of those individuals, roughly 120 have completed their initial health assessments and have been educated in the care and treatment of diabetes and hypertension.
As a result, the Saint Peter’s initiative will shed its pilot status and was to be fully implemented April 1, according to the release.
“The patient-centered medical home is a way of organizing primary care that emphasizes care coordination and communication,” Margaret Drozd, RN, FNP, director of community mobile health services for Saint Peter’s, said in the release. “Such a model enables us to transform primary care into what patients want it to be. Medical homes in turn can lead to higher quality and lower costs and can improve patients’ and providers’ experience of care.”
The Saint Peter’s effort to provide education and preventive care was launched July 1 as part of a $20.5 million state grant awarded under New Jersey’s Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment program, known as DSRIP, a component of the federal Affordable Care Act.
“The Saint Peter’s program is designed to result in better care for individuals — including access to care, quality of care, and healthier outcomes — better health for the population, and lower costs by transitioning hospital funding to a model by which payment is contingent on achieving health-improvement goals and benchmarks,” Lorraine Nelson, PhD, DSRIP program manager, said in the release. “Judging by the results thus far, we are on pace to attain our goals for the region’s better health.”
Patients are referred into the Saint Peter’s program via outpatient and inpatient services, the ED, same-day service locations and community health screenings conducted by Saint Peter’s clinical staff. The program includes the use of multi-therapeutic outpatient evidence-based management, lifestyle modification, nutritional consultation, intensive hospital discharge planning, a dedicated patient navigation system and improved social services.
“Saint Peter’s effort to educate the public about diabetes and hypertension, while coupling those lessons with preventive care, is the way of the future in medicine,” Drozd said in the release. “The healthcare of yesterday was too often about treating advanced disease symptoms in a hospital setting. Tomorrow is about nipping disease in the bud before it can cost us both dollars and lives.”
A 2012 Community Health Needs Assessment study by Saint Peter’s Healthcare System and Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, New Brunswick, N.J., demonstrated that diabetes and hypertension are two of the most prevalent health issues affecting the residents of central New Jersey. More than half (56.2%) of adults surveyed had been diagnosed with at least one chronic condition, and 30.8% had been diagnosed with high blood pressure.

By | 2015-07-20T19:35:52-04:00 July 15th, 2015|Categories: New York/New Jersey Metro|0 Comments

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Barry Bottino
Barry Bottino is a freelance writer and editor who has more than 25 years of experience at various newspapers and magazines.

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