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Cambridge Health Alliance Receives Grant from Harvard Medical School to Transform Primary Care Practices

Four CHA clinics among the 17 Boston-area practices selected for two-year grants to transform health care training and delivery

Posted Date: 3/12/2012

Cambridge, MA…Cambridge Health Alliance (CHA) is one of six Boston-area hospitals and health systems selected for the newly formed Academic Innovations Collaborative launched by the Harvard Medical School Center for Primary Care (HMSCPC), which will provide more than $10 million in resources over two years to 17 hospital-based primary care teaching practices and affiliated community health practice partners.

CHA will receive a $1 million grant and provide an additional $1 million in matching funds. The CHA grant recipients are the CHA Malden Family Medicine Center, Cambridge Primary Care Center, Somerville Hospital Primary Care, and the Windsor Street Health Center in Cambridge. These practices serve a broad mix of patients, many of whom live in low-income communities surrounding Boston and involve a variety of primary care disciplines including internal medicine, pediatrics, and family medicine.

The goal of the initiative is to create a platform for training future health care leaders by transforming Harvard-affiliated primary care teaching practices through innovation in four key areas: team-based primary care, management and prevention of chronic illnesses, management of patients with multiple illnesses, and patient empowerment and behavior change.

Those principles have guided the transformation of CHA’s network of primary care centers into a Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) neighborhood, which the health system has been developing since 2008. The PCMH model emphasizes teamwork and improved communication to advance patient health outcomes and the patient experience. CHA expects all of its primary care practices to be functioning as PCMHs by 2013.

Through the Collaborative, the 17 clinical sites will join forces to develop best practices for transforming systems of care, improving value in health care, and creating a stronger platform for health care education. The grants will also highlight the benefits of interdisciplinary teamwork in which patients, doctors, nurses, social workers, pharmacists, and other allied health professionals learn from and support each other in innovative ways to improve patient care.

“We are very pleased to receive this grant, as the approach is integral to our commitment to increasing access to high-quality primary care,” said Allison Bayer, CHA’s Acting Chief Executive Officer. “By engaging and supporting trainees in practice of the PCMH model, we look forward to attracting and retaining excellent physicians dedicated to providing primary care in our communities.”

“This initiative brings patients and residents into the change process along with the practitioners from multiple professions,” said David Bor, MD, CHA’s Chief of Medicine. “We are thrilled to be chosen and to share our innovations and progress with colleagues in this collaborative.”

“A partnership of this scope is without precedent in our community and could provide solutions to our country’s most pressing health care problems, solutions that we hope will make our state health care system, and ultimately our national health care system, among the best in the world,” said Center for Primary Care Interim Co-Director Russell Phillips, MD.

To view the complete list of grantees and more information, visit: http://primarycare.hms.harvard.edu. Harvard Medical School Center for Primary Care’s mission is to transform care by embracing service, wellness, patient and community empowerment, and innovation in systems for care and training at Harvard, academic health centers, and beyond.

Cambridge Health Alliance is an integrated, award-winning health system that provides high quality care in Cambridge, Somerville, and Boston’s metro-north communities. It includes three hospital campuses, a network of primary care and specialty practices, and the Cambridge Public Health Dept. CHA is a Harvard Medical School teaching affiliate and is also affiliated with Harvard School of Public Health, Harvard School of Dental Medicine, and Tufts University School of Medicine. Visit us online at www.challiance.org.

 


Cambridge Health Alliance is a vital and innovative community health system that provides essential services to Cambridge, Somerville, and Boston’s metro-north communities. It includes three hospital campuses, a network of primary care and specialty practices, and the Cambridge Public Health Department. CHA is a Harvard Medical School teaching affiliate and is also affiliated with Harvard School of Public Health, Harvard School of Dental Medicine, and Tufts University School of Medicine.