Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) have the community’s health at the heart of their operations, even as they endeavor to provide value-based health care. Their unique and effective approach to health care, especially in data management and enhancing communal health, provides an ideal spotlight that paves the way for other health care providers.
Health care providers can enhance the efficacy of their efforts by following effective examples modeled by FQHCs. Some of the approaches that health care providers can adopt from top FQHCs include:
Health Information Exchange (HIE)
FQHCs play a leading role in data storage (warehousing) and sharing such data between health care facilities. These efforts take center stage at communal and state level, providing an integrated network of facilities that share patient-related information. Through health information exchange, health care providers can significantly improve their level of care.
From a patient’s standpoint, HIE ensures that patient-related information is relayed across health providers, thus minimizing the cost of treatment. It also takes the edge off patients, who can then concentrate of treatment as opposed to a series of procedures in different health care settings. Further, health care providers in a given setting can readily access information regarding a patient, thereby eliminating the need for re-tests. This leads to an improvement in overall health care provision. Health care providers can adopt HIE as a viable tool for enhancing access to information and minimizing cost of treatment.
HIE ensures that health care providers can also benefit from the use of available resources such as computer hardware used to store and relay patient data, thus lowering the need for redundant resources. Consequently, resources can be put to better use in safeguarding patients’ health.
FQHCs promote the involvement of all stakeholders in upholding the healthcare system. Further, by ensuring that the stakeholders are in alignment with the need for enhancing capacity, FQHCs promoted best practices in healthcare. Besides that, they ensure that health facilities focus the information gleaned from patient records in furthering health care delivery.
Once the stakeholders are working in tandem, they are better equipped to identify gaps in their areas of practice. They can then rectify them, and channel available resources solely towards providing better health services. Thus, improved access and service delivery to underserved communities would ensure they have as good a shot at sound health as other areas across the nation.
Patient Involvement in Health care
The healthcare system in the US is increasingly under pressure owing to the limited and often strained resources required to cater to emergent patient needs. FQHCs have continued to play a leading role in enhancing the efficacy of primary care to patients. Such efforts often involve preventive care and working out mechanisms for monitoring health care costs to ensure they do not spiral out of control, as well as continuously improving patient billing processes to ensure their financial well-being stays optimal.
That way, patient care takes a holistic dimension by involving patients in actively managing their health, which translates to enhanced value. Health care providers can thus adopt patient-centered initiatives in delivering their services, while following the FQHCs’ lead in minimizing health care costs. Reduced costs would thus enable health care providers to reach more patients while engaging sustainably in enhancing overall patients’ health.
Overall, FQHCs serve a pivotal role in enhancing healthcare provision to underserved communities. Their peers in health care can adopt these approaches in order to lower cost of healthcare, provide greater access to medical care, and enhance value to patients.