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Trumpeting success of California clinics


Carmela Castellano-Garcia, chief executive officer of the California Primary Care Association, writes in Modern Healthcare:

“In California, we have a diverse network of community clinics and health centers that has driven innovations in quality, access and cost for decades.”

“{We have learned} the importance of prudent fiscal stewardship and common-sense care. We learned the importance of cultural competency, social determinants of health, food insecurity, housing status and our patient’s financial well-being. We understand that health is not just what happens in the exam room, but is total sum of a patient’s life and experience.”

And she notes that:

“In February, Blue Shield of California Foundation’s report ‘Delivering on a Promise: Advances and Opportunities in healthcare for low-income Californians,’ found that community clinic and health center patients are as satisfied with their care as those seeing private doctors. Key to their success is their ability to establish greater connectedness with their patients, understand cultural competence and providing social service referrals—which is likely why clinics and health centers in the state have seen an 11 percent increase in overall patient satisfaction since the foundation started measuring it in 2011. The report also noted that community health centers are moving in the right direction, taking patient engagement and experience seriously, and showed that they outperformed other types of facilities by establishing greater connectedness with their patients.”

She also noted praise for California community-health centers’  efforts to merge primary-care and behavioral-health services in one facility, which means that many aspects of mental health can be addressed by non-physician clinicians.





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