Paid Sponsorship by Aledade
By: Karen L. Smith, MD, FAAFP
I have been a family physician in Hoke County, NC, for many years. In this role, I walk with patients through all stages of life, from the birth of new babies to comforting patients and families in their loved one’s last days. I believe in the power of human connection—physical, emotional, and spiritual. It’s what my practice offers our patients.
Running an independent primary care practice today brings with it a range of financial and operational challenges. Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) are in a unique position to reward providers for quality and better outcomes through preventive care, care coordination, and avoiding unnecessary services. I believe that transitioning to value-based care will help my practice remain independent while I continue providing the high quality, personalized care my patients deserve.
I know my practice needs a partner to take our journey in value-based care to the next level. That’s why I have chosen to partner with Aledade to help us navigate toward better care at lower costs. Aledade offers us the technology, tools, and support we need to succeed, allowing us, the physicians, to focus on supporting our patients’ care.
More than 10 years ago, I was one of the first rural independent physicians to invest in patient portals, patient kiosks, and electronic health records. I saw this as an investment not only in the way that I practiced medicine, but also in my patients’ health. I feel the same way about Aledade’s technology platform. It will provide real time alerts when a patient visits the hospital or emergency room (ER), and tell us when patients visit a specialist or fill prescriptions.
The platform creates lists of patients to reach out to for annual wellness visits, ER follow-ups, and transitional care visits. It integrates data from various sources and provides unparalleled insight into my patient population to help me more effectively manage the quality and cost of their care.
In my rural community, I work with many patients who face tremendous health and socioeconomic challenges. While some may see a case of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or uncontrolled diabetes, we see an opportunity to have a conversation with our patients and discuss the larger picture of how we can help them. We are excited to use the Aledade tools to help us flag patients who need extra support so we can reach out and work to keep them out of the hospital. This tool complements our existing work and supports customized care plans, in which our whole team can collaborate.
I am excited to partner with Aledade to launch an Aledade ACO in North Carolina in 2019. The future looks bright for patients and independent primary care physicians in Hoke County and throughout North Carolina, and I am proud to be part of it.
To learn more about Aledade and the Aledade ACO currently being formed for independent primary care physicians in Ohio, contact Director of Strategic Provider Recruitment Beth Schindele or call 202.810.5685. For more information, you can also visit the Aledade website.
About Karen L. Smith, MD
Honored as the 2017 Family Physician of the Year by the American Academy of Family Physicians, Karen L. Smith, MD, has leveraged technology and support through Aledade to improve patient care in Hoke County, NC, an underserved, rural community that has one primary doctor for every 16,000 patients to the state’s average of one per 1,500 patients.