Increasing Community Health and Decreasing Healthcare Costs
Lanham, MD – Doctors Community Hospital was the first urban hospital to enter into a population health management agreement with the state of Maryland. This agreement will strengthen the hospital’s efforts to provide accessible and preventative care to Prince George’s County residents while decreasing healthcare costs.
According to Maryland’s Health Services Cost Review Commission (HSCRC), hospitals have historically operated within a structure that provided financial incentives based on patient volumes – increased inpatient admissions often equated to elevated profits and stability. However, population health management reorients hospitals to put a greater focus on ensuring that people have the right care, at the right time and in the right settings. Such an approach is encouraging hospitals to change their business models by placing significantly more emphasis on preventative care and outpatient services while decreasing inpatient admissions and costs.
“As we learned more about population health management, we quickly saw how it was a great fit for our hospital. It closely mirrors and reinforces our tradition of developing high-quality and comprehensive programs that directly address the real needs of our community.” stated Phil Down, president at Doctors Community Hospital.
Additionally, population health management will encourage a stronger relationship among multiple community organizations and providers – creating shared goals to improve overall community health, decrease hospital readmission rates and reduce costly emergency department visits. With a culture that recognizes the importance of partnerships, the hospital plans to continue that focus through alliances with various community entities like the Prince George’s County Health Department (PGCHD). For example, the hospital and PGCHD currently work together to help uninsured and underinsured county residents receive free diabetes, colorectal, cervical and breast care education and screenings.
Down continues, “Doctors Community Hospital has been a healthcare leader in the county for almost 40 years. We regularly assess and reassess our services to ensure that we are providing programs that our community needs and deserves. From our specialized Congestive Heart Failure Clinic to our dedicated Joslin Diabetes Center, we have created a strong foundation from which we will become the hospital of the future to support population health and strengthen the healthcare fabric of our community.”