The complex array of needs posed by older adults has frequently produced fragmentation of care in traditional fee-for-service systems. Integration of care components in newer health systems will maximize patient benefits and organizational efficiency. This article outlines the major issues involved in integration of care for older populations. A health system must integrate its care of older adults in many ways: among providers, both in primary care and specialty services; with community-based sources of care; and across sites of care (clinic, hospital, emergency department, and nursing home). Integrating reimbursement structures for various services will serve to create a client-oriented system, as opposed to a finance-centered system, thereby enhancing coordination of care. The extent to which two experimental comprehensive systems, PACE (Program of All-inclusive Care of the Elderly) and SHMO II (Social Health Maintenance Organization), have achieved clinical and financial integration are discussed in detail. Healthcare organizations are encouraged to create integrated models of care and to study the effects of integration on patient outcomes.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||American Journal of Managed Care|
|Issue number||1 SUPPL.|
|State||Published - Dec 1 1999|