Implementing community-oriented primary care projects in an urban family practice residency program

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8 Scopus citations


Background: Clinics interested in pursuing community-oriented primary care (COPC) have struggled with the implementation of its theory. Although we are still early in the COPC transformation process, the HealthPartners Family Practice Residency Program has had several successful COPC projects during our 10 years of experience. This article describes these projects and the 8 lessons learned, including some that differ from traditional COPC teaching and practice. In our experience, clinics should select a topic or problem that creates a passion within their clinic. Projects can start small within the clinic and expand outward into larger portions of the urban community. Partnerships begin the process of extending into the community and increasing the project's impact. The evaluation of projects should begin with clinic-based data. A physician champion and a nonphysician staff person increase the success of the project. Resident involvement is enhanced with concrete tasks and community connections. Ultimately, the project needs to be institutionalized within the clinic to survive. The whole COPC endeavor is a long, slow process that requires time, energy, and committed individuals. In our experience, COPC is a journey, not an end, and there are many rich rewards to be found along the way.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)683-690
Number of pages8
JournalFamily medicine
Issue number10
StatePublished - Nov 22 2000

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