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MHI News

MHI Analysis of Primary Care Investment in St. Louis Metro Region | 10.01.19

As health spending continues to grow nationwide, communities across the country have begun to measure and analyze their investments in primary care.

This work is of crucial importance. Having a primary care provider (PCP) has been shown to lead to better outcomes for patients. A PCP is like the quarterback of a football team, managing all of the care provided to the PCP’s patients, including care provided by clinician specialists. Compared to those without a PCP, patients who have a PCP have fewer emergency room visits and fewer hospitalizations for conditions that could have been managed on an outpatient basis.

The Midwest Health Initiative (MHI) is using its unique data asset to help the St. Louis region understand what commercially insured patients are spending for their health care and how that has changed over time. MHI’s report is built on groundbreaking work by the Millbank Memorial Fund and the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative. In this report, MHI also examined work done in other communities and offered an analysis of primary care investment in the St. Louis metro area.

The MHI analysis shows that, as a region, the St. Louis metro area spent an average 5.6 percent of overall health spending on primary care. A large national survey found rates of primary care spending of between 5.6 percent and 10.2 percent, depending on how the spending was calculated.

For more on the study, please click here.

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