Bravo Howard County Health Department!!!

You can’t see me but I am giving you a standing ovation in my pajamas (at 2:36 am no less). I just read this teeny tiny blurb in the Columbia Flier about the health department creating a Community Based Care Team.  This group helps clients who have been recently discharged from Howard County General Hospital and identified as someone who may need help accessing services and care. They stick with them for 90 days providing support. This is a partnership between the health department, the Horizon Foundation and Healthy Howard. Wonderful!!!

I’m singing their praises because this is an example of the new wave of health care in America. The ‘Obamacare’ influence is all over the place. Treating the whole patient and not just giving them a bandage and sending them home. In public health, the term for this is “patient-centered care”. Once a person is discharged from a hospital after surgery people rarely ever question what their next steps will be. No one ever says “I wonder what else this person is struggling with?” You may think that’s none of your business but it is in a way. If the patient is struggling with some bad habits chances are they will be back at that hospital for the same issue within a year. You don’t want that especially if they are dependent on Medicaid. Now we have public health models that show that treating the patient and helping them with other factors that influence health such as housing, workplace conditions, environment, etc. can lower the chances of a relapse. Big plus!!!

I’m going back to bed now. But if you’re a health care nerd like me here are a couple good reads to explain the reasoning behind patient-centered health care.

Building Healthier Communities by Investing in Prevention

Community and Practice-Based Teams, Real Time Information, and Financial Incentives Help Medical Homes Improve Care, Reduce Utilization and Costs

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