317 Physician Assistant Scope of Practice 2015
have a vital role to play in both of these new models of care. 298
In the late 1960s, the American Academy of Pediatrics (“AAP”) introduced the concept of a “medical home” as a way to improve the care of
children with special needs. 299 Originally, the term was used to characterize
a central repository for archiving medical information about this population
of pediatric patients. 300 In 2007, the American Academy of Family Physicians (“AAFP”), the American College of Physicians (“ACP”), AAP, and
the American Osteopathic Association (“AOA”) jointly determined that the
term “medical home” had evolved to encompass an approach to primary
healthcare that is coordinated, comprehensive, integrated, patient-centered,
accessible, high quality and safe: the PCMH. 301 According to the Institute of
Medicine, patient centeredness is health care with a foundation in the partnership between the providers and their patients. 302 Patients are involved in
every step of the process. 303 PAs have the knowledge and skills that are
needed to provide patient-centered care and build and preserve an effective
PCMH because of the team approach nature of the PA education, regulation, and clinical style. 304 In fact, the profession aligns with the PCMH
model since PA practice is integrated, patient-focused, and team-based. 305
As adept clinicians, exceptional communicators, and talented team players,
298. See Stephen H. Hanson, Physician Assistants: Recognized, Valued in Healthcare
Reform, PHYSICIANS PRACTICE BLOG (Aug. 31, 2012), available at http://www.
(“[T]he ACA fully integrates PAs into newly established models of coordinated care. PAs
play an important role in patient-centered, primary-care medical homes, Independence at
Home models of care, chronic care management, and other new models of care designed to
better coordinate care through team-based practice and to promote value to the healthcare
299. Calvin Sia et al., History of the Medical Home Concept, 113 J. OF THE AM. ACAD.
OF PEDIATRICS 1473, 1473 (2004).
300. ROBERT GRAHAM CTR., The Patient Centered Medical Home: History, Seven Core
Features, Evidence and Transformational Change 1, 4 (2007).
301. PATIENTCENTEREDPRIMARYCARECOLLABORATIVE, JOINTPRINCIPLES OF THE
PATIENT-CENTERED MEDICAL HOME 2 (2007), available at http://www.pcpcc.org/about
302. Margarita P. Hurtado et al., INST. OF MEDICINE, ENVISIONING A NATIONAL HEALTH
CARE QUALITY REPORT (2001).
304. AM.ACAD. OFPHYSICIANASSISTANTS,PROFESSIONALISSUES:ISSUEBRIEF:
PHYSICIAN ASSISTANTS AND THE PATIENT-CENTERED MEDICAL HOME 1 (2013), available at
http://www.aapa.org/WorkArea/DownloadAsset.aspx?id=581 (“PAs, as skilled medical providers, excellent communicators and consummate team players, embody qualities essential
to an effective PCMH practice . . . Understanding team dynamics is one of the major challenges to creating a successful medical home. With their education, regulation and clinical
style all based on a team approach to care, PAs bring to a practice a finely tuned understanding of the skills required to create and sustain an effective PCMH practice.”).
305. ISSUE BRIEF, supra note 304, at 1.