What is a patient-centered medical home, or PCMH?
A Patient-Centered Medical Home is a team-based model of care led by a personal provider – physician, nurse practitioner or physician’s assistant – who delivers continuous and coordinated care throughout a patient's lifetime to maximize health outcomes.
The PCMH practice is responsible for providing for all of a patient's healthcare needs across the spectrum, including appropriately arranging care with other qualified professionals. This includes preventive services, treatment of acute and chronic illness, as well as assistance with end-of-life issues -- in short, any health care need you may need over your lifetime, thus treating the "whole person."
It is a model of practice in which a team of health professionals, coordinated by a personal provider, works collaboratively to provide high levels of care, access and communication, care coordination and integration, and care quality and safety.
As the name implies, “patient-centered” is a way of saying that you, the patient, are the most important person in the health care system. You are at the center of your health care. “Medical home” is the approach to providing total health care. With your medical home, you will join a team that includes healthcare professionals, trusted friends or family members (if you wish) and, most importantly, you.