Today leadership from Keystone First and Woods Services officially marked the opening of the newly expanded Medical Center at Woods and the launch of a Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) program. This innovative PCMH serving individuals with significant intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) and complex medical challenges, is a national model for providing more comprehensive, coordinated care for these vulnerable populations.
“Through this collaboration with Keystone First, the new Patient Centered Medical Home program and expanded Medical Center at Woods will allow us to improve care coordination, provide extended service hours to reduce disruptive ER visits, and increase access to more advanced medical services right here on our campus,” said Tine Hansen-Turton, President and CEO of Woods Services. “For many of our residents with complex medical needs, the ability to reduce environmental disruptions while providing them with first-rate medical care is truly a gamechanger.”
The new Medical Center and PCMH program will empower Woods to provide the Keystone First members in its care, as well as 500 other individuals Woods serves, with superior continuity of care to improve health outcomes. The launch is part of an overall population health management approach at Woods Services that is reliant on industry best practices, moving the industry forward with new solutions, and providing the Woods community with superior care and support.
In addition to those served by Woods, the Medical Center will also offer free, on-site primary medical care as a benefit to all 2,000 Woods employees and will serve as a community medical hub for qualifying neighbors with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
“We are proud to work with providers like Woods Services which share our commitment to making high quality, coordinated care accessible to those most in need,” said Keystone First Market President Joanne McFall. “The PCMH program will provide our members served by Woods with a medical home that will help them manage their health. We look forward to joinin
g Woods in this expansion of our respective missions.”
Providing medical care for the Woods community on its Bucks County campus is not new. However, in the past, Woods has relied on external resources such as the emergency room for service during evening and weekend hours, as well as for specialized services such as radiology. For people with developmental and intellectual disabilities, these abrupt environmental changes and exposure to medical professionals not familiar with their cases can be disruptive. In addition, regular reliance on emergency services for ongoing medical issues generates significant costs to the system. This new Woods PCMH program creates a team-based health care delivery model. It provides comprehensive and continuous medical care with extended hours and increased access to more specialized medical services for patients with complex health needs, with a goal of achieving maximal health outcomes and reducing unnecessary costs to the healthcare system.
Children and adults with I/DD experience multiple barriers to healthcare access that include finding providers who accept Medicaid and Medicare, are willing to take the time often needed for longer patient visits, and are trained to overcome communication, behavioral or other challenges. Additionally, children and adults with I/DD and behavioral challenges tend to have more complex medical issues than those without. When their intellectual disability is linked to a variety of genetic disorders, the medical challenges may significantly exceed those of persons without such genetic conditions. Because of these complexities, people with I/DD account for a significant portion of the Medicaid and Medicare spending.
As a first-of-its-kind program, this PCMH at Woods serves as a national model and is expected to be replicated by Woods in other similar communities across the country in coming years.
About Woods Services
Woods Services is a nonprofit, multi-service population health management and advocacy organization that along with four affiliate organizations provides innovative, comprehensive and integrated health, education, housing, workforce, behavioral health and case management services to more than 4,000 children and adults in the intellectual and developmental disability, child welfare, behavioral and brain trauma public health sectors who have complex and intensive medical and behavioral healthcare needs. Founded in 1913 by Philadelphia schoolteacher Mollie Woods with two simple goals – to advance quality of life and standard of care for individuals with disabilities – Woods Services continues its mission today by helping children and adults with disabilities or challenges to achieve their highest potential. For more information, visit woods.org.
About Keystone First
Keystone First is a Medical Assistance (Medicaid) managed care health product offered by Vista Health Plan, Inc., an affiliate of Independence Blue Cross, in five southeastern Pennsylvania counties. Here at Keystone First, we are mission-driven and dedicated to helping members get care, stay well and build healthy communities. For more information, visit www.keystonefirstpa.com.
Independence Blue Cross and Vista Health Plan, Inc. are independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.