12 Feb Personal Health Advisor: The Perfect Care Coordinator
Coordinator (kō-ôr‘dn-ā’shən) n.
- The act of coordinating
- The state of being coordinated; harmonious adjustment or interaction.
I am finishing up some more of my postings related to the Innovators Prescription, but prior to do so I wanted to highlight a key insight mentioned when evaluating the disruptions required to help the Primary Care system to become more effective:
“We have concluded that a personal adviser of some sort truly needs to be available to direct patients who may not know where to go, so they can find the care they need, and receive that care through the appropriate business models. Many of those who write and speak about reforming health care have called this adviser an “Accountable Care Organization“ – one whose perspective enables it to orchestrate the health care that individuals consume.
Dr. Elliott Fisher and his colleagues at Dartmouth College have played a leading role in promoting the concept of the Accountable Care Organization. It is an entity that can guide each patient to the right provider at the right time, given the job he or he needs to get done, linking the more focused and specialized care providers together with the personal electronic health records. Some have likened this adviser as a medical “On Star” button, referring to the button in General Motors cars that motorist can press whenever they get lost or need help.
Still others have encouraged the notion of a patient-centered medical home, a model of care in which a single individual, – most often a physican – serves as the first point of contact for the patient, coordinates the entire team of providers, and integrates care across all institutions to ensure quality and safety.
We have concluded, however, that assigning this role to an independent primary care physician’s practice is a bad choice. It forces those practices into comingling business models, with the result that they are integrated inadequately for the jobs pateints need to do, and imposes accountability for areas of care that are often beyond the coordinator’s control. Furthermore, the information, skills, and perspective required to play the role of an effective advisor are not uniquely instilled in physicians. With this burden placed on others, primary care doctors can practice medicine, which for most is the career they thought they had chosen in the first place.
I find this so insightful because this line of thinking was the exact job that Crossover Health was designed to perform for individual consumers. The service concept behind Crossover (aggregate, analyze, and advise) appeals to individuals and sponsoring organizations who value their health as an asset and want a trusted advisor to help personalize and assist in managing it as such. The technology that Crossover is developing/evaluating will also help make this mass personalization scalable to address what I perceive will be a large and growing need among consumers as the health care system continues to fragment in the coming years.
Stay tuned for some announcements from Crossover in the coming weeks.