J Ambul Care Manage 34:380-390.
Schneider Institutes for Health Policy, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA, USA
OBJECTIVE: To determine how Community Health Centers (CHCs) perform relative to other primary care providers.
RESEARCH DESIGN: A retrospective cohort study of Medicaid claims comparing provider groups on the basis of avoidable hospitalizations and costs.
RESULTS: Avoidable hospitalization rates did not differ significantly across care settings. Hospital outpatient departments and CHCs had comparable total costs, whereas physicians had slightly but significantly lower total costs.
CONCLUSIONS: Understanding determinants of care cost differences could inform future performance improvement initiatives. Care quality variance within provider groups may be more significant than care quality performance across care settings.
Comment in: Commentary on Gurewich et Al, “comparative performance of community health centers and other usual sources of primary care”: community health centers: valuable partners for state medicaid programs. [J Ambul Care Manage. 2011]
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