The current pandemic is a public health emergency, and one of the outcomes from it is that healthcare is decentralizing.  This is an opportunity for home-based primary care as a house call from a doctor is a way to provide quality care to patients, while keeping an already medically compromised community safer.

According to the American Academy of Home Care Medicine (AAHCM), 2 million people are homebound due to frailty and illness, and of those homebound individuals, only 15% are being served using home-based primary care models, according to Dr. Thomas Cornwell, executive chairman of the Home Centered Care Institute.

“Sometimes, I say, ‘What if we were only servicing 15% of oncology patients or heart patients?’” Cornwell told Home Health Care News. “We would think that’s terrible. Not only is this care remarkable for this highest-cost population, but nothing has been shown to save more health care costs.”

“House calls do pay about $10 to $30 more than an office visit, but you can do at least double the number of office visits in time it takes to do a house call,” he said. “House calls have been shown to be a high-value [model] — and yet it’s a low-volume business. Fee-for-service has been the drawback, because you just could not financially make it on the Medicare payments.”

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