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Reading: Patient perceptions of integrated care: confused by the term, clear on the concept

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Research & theory

Patient perceptions of integrated care: confused by the term, clear on the concept

Authors:

Kara Odom Walker ,

University of California-San Francisco, US
About Kara
Assistant Professor, Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of California San Francisco
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Alanna Labat,

About Alanna
Research Assistant, Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of California-San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
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Judy Choi,

About Judy

Clinical Instructor, Department of Family Medicine, University of California-Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA

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Julie A. Schmittdiel,

Kaiser Permanente Northern California
About Julie

Kaiser Permanente Northern California Division of Research, Oakland, CA

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Anita L. Stewart,

About Anita
Professor, Institute for Health & Aging, Center for Aging in Diverse Communities, University of California-San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
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Kevin Grumbach

About Kevin
Professor, Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of California-San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
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Abstract

Purpose: Health care reform in the United States has introduced terms such as “the patient-centered medical home” and “integrated care” that are often unclear and unfamiliar to patients. This study explored patient experiences with the functional domains of integrated care.

Theory and methods: Patients first wrote their definitions of integrated care and then participated in focus group discussions about their experiences with the health care system. Transcripts were analyzed for thematic content.

Results: Forty-four patients participated in one of seven focus groups in San Francisco, CA in English and Spanish. Many patients were not clear about the meaning of the term integrated care. However, patients described experiences largely reflected in an existing conceptual model of integrated care and the importance of coordination within and across teams and with community resources, continuity and sharing of information, and patient engagement. Patients with high medical needs described the ubiquitous challenges they faced in experiencing coordinated care.

Conclusions: Patients may not understand the term integrated care but are relatively clear on what the concept of integrated care entails and support its successful implementation. Patients and their families are at the center of integrated care, and health systems need to support and empower them to successfully navigate the medical neighborhood.

How to Cite: Odom Walker K, Labat A, Choi J, Schmittdiel JA, Stewart AL, Grumbach K. Patient perceptions of integrated care: confused by the term, clear on the concept. International Journal of Integrated Care. 2013;13(1):None. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5334/ijic.985
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Published on 08 Mar 2013.
Peer Reviewed

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