Quality and team care response to the pandemic stresses in high performing primary care practices: a qualitative study Journal Article uri icon
  • OBJECTIVE: To learn how high performing primary care practices organized care for patients with diabetes during the initial months of the COVID-19 pandemic. PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS: Semi-structured interviews were conducted between August 10 and December 10, 2020 with 16 leaders from 11 practices that had top quartile performance measures for diabetes outcomes pre-COVID. Each clinic had completed a similar interview and a survey about the existence of care management systems associated with quality outcomes before the pandemic. Transcript analysis utilized a theoretical thematic analysis at the semantic level. RESULTS: The pandemic disrupted the primary care practices' operations and processes considered important for quality prior to the pandemic, particularly clinic reliance on proactive patient care. Safety concerns resulted from the shift to virtual visits, which produced documentation gaps and led practices to reorder their use of proactive patient care processes. Informal interactions with patients also declined. These practices' challenges were mitigated by technical, informational and operational help from the larger organizations of which they were a part. Care management processes had to accommodate both in-person and virtual visits. CONCLUSION: These high performing practices demonstrated an ability to adapt their use of proactive patient care processes in pursuing quality outcomes for patients with diabetes during the pandemic. Continued clinic transformation and improvements in quality within primary care depend on the ability to restructure the responsibilities of care team members and their interactions with patients.

  • Link to Article
    publication date
  • 2022
  • published in
  • PloS One  Journal
  • Research
  • COVID-19
  • Coronavirus Infections
  • Diabetes
  • Organization of Care
  • Primary Health Care
  • Qualitative Studies
  • Quality of Health Care
  • Additional Document Info
  • 17
  • issue
  • 12