Skokie, Ill. [May 18, 2009] — The nation’s foremost ambulatory health care accrediting organization announced today that it has put standards in place and is now reviewing physician practices that define themselves as medical homes, an emerging trend in health care delivery. The announcement was made by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC/Accreditation Association), which accredits more than 4,000 ambulatory health care

The medical home concept calls for each patient to have one central, primary care physician who oversees and integrates all medical care. An adult’s medical home might be with a family practitioner or internist, while a child’s might be with a pediatrician. “The medical home is more than a concept. It is also a ‘place’ where the medical home physicians deliver care as well as coordinate the care provided by others. Having that facility, the equipment, the medical procedures and coordination processes reviewed and accredited will add a layer of safety and assurance for the consumer,” said John Burke, Ph.D., AAAHC executive director and CEO.

The potential of the medical home to improve patient care and hold down health care costs is gaining increasing support from government, providers, insurers and the public. A number of demonstration projects, including an eight-state program sponsored by Medicare, and others sponsored by commercial insurers, are assessing the benefits of the medical home.