The connection between our HouseCalls advanced practice clinicians and a member’s care team cannot be overemphasized. As our clinician Christy so aptly demonstrated in this example, we are an extension of that care team to identify and alert members as well as their care providers to clinical issues. In this member’s case, there was no history of diabetes, yet the disease was escalating quickly based on her symptoms.
Christy was able to quickly assess the member’s situation and reach out to the care team to see her right away. This provided the early alert that helps improve outcomes. As a clinician myself, I know how routine, but timely screenings and examinations can have significant implications. What makes HouseCalls so exceptional is that we are able to do all this from the convenience of a member’s home.
HouseCalls advanced practice clinicians (APCs) act as a vital link between members and their primary care providers (PCPs). It’s a relationship both sides value as shown by the strong partnership shown between HouseCalls clinician Christy and a PCP from a care clinic in Christy’s area.
When HouseCalls clinician Christy visited a member one afternoon, she quickly identified that the member had a serious medical condition. The member reported that she had to urinate frequently and was very thirsty. Glucose and A1c tests revealed highly abnormal results, even though the member had no history of diabetes. Christy immediately called the member’s PCP and arranged an appointment. After seeing the PCP, the member was admitted into the hospital for her diabetic symptoms
The clinic’s PCP called HouseCalls to thank Christy and the team for providing this home-based care, saying that, “HouseCalls is saving lives.” The member wasn’t scheduled for a clinic checkup for a few more months and risked significant distress had she waited any longer to get help.
Even in cases where a member isn’t having a significant health event, Christy knows that she plays a key role in helping members improve their health and communicate better with their care team. HouseCalls APCs, like Christy, take the time to ask them about questions they have about their medications or overall health. The APCs also help members create a list of questions to bring to their PCP so they can make the most of each appointment.
As the member’s PCP noted, the time spent in a member’s home is invaluable as an extension of the clinic’s ability to serve their patients.
As Optum HouseCalls employees, this is the kind of positive and caring experience clinicians like Christy create for every member at every home visit.
Learn more at Optum.com/housecalls
Jennifer Pryce DNP, CNE, ANP-BC, GNP-BC
Vice President, HouseCalls Clinical Field Operations, Optum