Define the innovation
Consumers are beginning to find a voice. Our program builds upon the theme “The Patient as a Catalyst for Change,” (IOM News, April 16, 2007). LANET is actively engaged in programs and projects that seek to give patients a greater voice in the primary care setting. We are planning to collect patient rating and satisfaction data via a straightforward and inexpensive web-based tool. Patients who visit selected primary care sites will be asked to volunteer quality- and satisfaction-related information. This information can be used to modify and improve our services and can be an important source of feedback to providers. This is the innovative component of the on-going traditional data-collection processes that we have used in the past.
Context for Disruption:
LANET is a community-based 501c(3) AHRQ-designated Primary Care Practice Based Research Network and a member of an ePBRN collaborative. Participation in the ePBRN has increased our access to tech resources and has heightened our awareness of the emerging role of technology in healthcare. We have recently proposed to AHRQ a very thorough review of the barriers to quality improvement in the primary care setting and plan to emphasize new approaches to old problems. The patient is a relatively untapped resource. Note the recent national coverage of “The Growing Clout of Online Patient Groups,” (The Wall Street Journal, June 13, 2007).
LANET collaborators/members are primary care providers that serve primarily a disadvantaged and minority population in the greater Los Angeles metro area. All of our programs operate efficiently and on a very tight budget. Technology has reached the point that we can use online survey tools that are very low cost, and we can provide access points within the clinics, also at very little cost. Preliminary data from one of our member clinics (Venice Community Clinic) indicates that a majority of our patient population now has access to the computer and to the web. We therefore are fully prepared to implement this innovation with established partners in the very near future.
Key Operational Partnerships
LA Net has collaborated with AHRQ on several studies, including the National Children’s Study Pilot. Currently LA Net is a member of the Electronic Primary Care Research Network (ePCRN), a Master Contractor consortium of practice based researched networks headed by the Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians Research Network (MAFPRN) and comprised of nine practice based research networks located across the country. Locally, LA Net partners with over 25 community clinics including, The Family Practice Center at USC University Hospital, California Hospital Medical Center, Clinicas Msr. Oscar Romero, South Central Family Health Center, Mercy Family Health Center, East Valley Community Health Center, Cleaver Family Wellness Clinic, St. John's Well Child & Family Center, QueensCare Clinics, The Los Angeles Free Clinics, Crenshaw Community Health Center, Watts Health Corporation, Pasadena Family Practice Center, Eisner Pediatric and Family Medical Center, Women's Health Center, White Memorial, The Children’s Clinics, Comprehensive Community Health Centers, and Family Health Care Centers of Greater Los Angeles. Over 250 individual health care providers are members of LA Net. LA Net also has relationships with LA Care, AltaMed, The Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County, the University of Southern California, The University of California, Los Angeles, and Latino Health Access. Currently LA Net is a member of Community Partners, a non-profit incubator service located at the California Endowment in Los Angeles.