Featured Medical Home: McMurray PAC

December 09th 2013
Featured Medical Home: McMurray PAC

 

McMurray Pediatrics: Moving Forward

 

We've selected McMurray Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine to be our featured medical home!

 

Located just southwest of Pittsburgh, McMurray Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine (PAC) is a community practice that serves about 2,500 children and youth, including 284 CYSHCN. For over six years, McMurray PAC has partnered with PA MHI to improve the medical home experience for patients and families at their practice.

 

Many of our medical homes have dedicated care coordination teams made up of administrative staff, nurses and practitioners that work to create a family-centered environment for their patients. At McMurray PAC, Dr. Tonja DiCamillo (the practice's solo practitioner) is the care coordination team. She is involved at every level of medical home care: she updates patient registries, administers HIPAAs to be signed, and attends MHI meetings and conferences. While Dr. DiCamillo does work with a great team of nurses and office personnel, it's her deep commitment and perseverance that has made the medical home model an integral part of her practice.


 

Most recently, Dr. DiCamillo and her support staff have started work on an important feature of the PA MHI program – our transition to adult healthcare program. The transition program was created to address the unique needs of young adults with chronic conditions as they transfer from their pediatric primary care provider (PCP) to an adult PCP. We spoke with Dr. DiCamillo about her experience in the program thus far, and about the challenges around successfully transitioning her young adult patients to appropriate adult providers.

 

"I was already doing some work around transition before signing onto the program," said Dr. DiCamillo. "I hosted several group meetings with parents and youth to get their feedback about how transition went for them – and to be honest, the feedback wasn't good." Before joining the program, Dr. DiCamillo found it difficult to find adult providers who would meet the needs of her population of youth. Oftentimes, her patients with special needs are unprepared for the transition process, and it's not helped by the lack of communication that persists between her practice and adult PCPs in the area.

"The biggest problem we have in medicine today is lack of communication between doctors. For example, one of my patients transferred to an adult provider some time ago. She has severe cerebral palsy, and we have about three charts of notes and information about her healthcare. She can't communicate many of her health needs, yet I've never received a request to transfer her records to her new provider. That concerns me, because I wonder if they know everything they need to know about this young lady. When I call some of my patients' new doctors, I rarely hear back."

Since joining the transition program, Dr. DiCamillo admits that she has become more focused around the needs of young adult patients. Her optimism about fostering successful transitions has increased as well. "The transition team at PA MHI has found me two potential adult practices that might be interested in working with me, which is great. Before, I had no one that I could specifically recommend to my patients." By identifying adult partners to team up with McMurray PAC, the transition team hopes to create an ongoing and open dialogue between a patient's pediatric PCP and their new adult PCP, so that healthcare is continuous and coordinated across all systems and services.

 

Learn more about McMurray PAC by visting their website, www.mcmurraypediatrics.com.