“There’s no place like home.” Most everyone has a feeling of comfort and warmth when they walk into their home. We think the same can be said for patient-centered medical homes. These primary care practices – called PCMHs- are the homes for people’s health care. PCMH’s are places where doctors and practitioners, an entire team of people, get to know their patients and work together to give the best care possible.
NCQA’s PCMH Recognition program is the most widely adopted PCMH evaluation program in the country with more than 13,000 recognized practices and 67,000 clinicians. Among them is Mary’s Center in Washington, DC.
Spotlight – Mary’s Center
In 1988 Maria S. Gomez, President and CEO of Mary’s Center, was working as a nurse at the District of Columbia’s Department of Health. That was a time when many Latin American immigrants were migrating to the United States to escape war, poverty, and death. Many of the women had been raped or experienced other trauma in their journeys north. Once in the United States, they often went without prenatal care because they had nowhere to go. Maria and a group of activists started Mary’s Center to help meet the needs of mothers. Created with funding from the D.C. Mayor’s Office on Latino Affairs and the D.C. Department of Health, Mary’s Center started as a small basement clinic delivering bilingual health services to pregnant women and their infants.
Today, Mary’s Center sees nearly 50,000 women, men and children in eight locations across the Washington metro area. Their services aren’t limited to health care. Mary’s Center also provides social services, education and workforce development to under-resourced, uninsured and under-served people in the D.C. metropolitan region as well as to newcomers from almost 50 countries.
“no other way to practice medicine…”
Maria Gomez, Mary’s Center President and CEO knows from experience that the PCMH model works and says, “There really is no other way to practice medicine in a way that is efficient and effective…we’re working hard but we know we are working for an end that is actually making the patient better.”
Watch this video to see Mary’s Center from the inside and see for yourself how this PCMH is making healthcare better.
Cindy is Senior Communications Manager at NCQA. Her focus is building consumer awareness through media and public relations. A communications and public engagement strategist with a background steeped in TV news reporting, Cindy is also part of NCQA’s Creative Services unit developing messaging through visual storytelling.