Patient-centered medical home: an emerging primary care model and the military health system

Mil Med. 2011 Nov;176(11):1253-9. doi: 10.7205/milmed-d-11-00109.


The patient-centered medical home (PCMH) is a primary care model that aims to provide quality care that is coordinated, comprehensive, and cost-effective. PCMH is hinged upon building a strong patient-provider relationship and using a team-based approach to care to increase continuity and access. It is anticipated that PCMH can curb the growth of health care costs through better preventative medicine and lower utilization of services. The Navy, Air Force, and Army are implementing versions of PCMH, which includes the use of technologies for improved documentation, better disease management, improved communication between the care teams and patients, and increased access to care. This article examines PCMH in the Military Health System by providing examples of the transition from each of the branches. The authors argue that the military must overcome unique challenges to implement and sustain PCMH that civilian providers may not face because of the deployment of patients and staff, the military's mission of readiness, and the use of both on-base and off-base care by beneficiaries. Our objective is to lay out these considerations and to provide ways that they have been or can be addressed within the transition from traditional primary care to PCMH.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Insurance, Health / organization & administration
  • Medical Informatics
  • Military Medicine / organization & administration*
  • Models, Organizational
  • Patient-Centered Care*
  • Primary Health Care / organization & administration*