The first grant that Barbara L. McAneny, MD, FASCO, MACP, chief executive officer, New Mexico Cancer Center (NMCC), ever applied for, she got: $19.8 million from the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) to expand a model for an oncology medical home that was pioneered in Albuquerque, N.M.
Discussing the role of care models and data on July 15 in Denver, McAneny introduced the model — the Community Oncology Medical Home, or COME HOME — through the story of Larry, an octogenarian pancreatic cancer patient who had hopes of traveling out to Las Vegas in the near future but was faced with a possible hospital admission.
In another setting, Larry may have had an expensive ambulance ride to the emergency department, which would lead to a wait, a code status inquiry, a query on smoking, a check of A1c and a variety of other quality measures that didn’t help his main concern: an infection that turned out to be septic shock.
Luckily, Larry was being cared for by NMCC, leading to a much different outcome: They pulled up the triage pathways that account for early warning signs, figured out what Larry’s issues were, had him come in and cultured him for infection and started a first dose of antibiotics, along with a high-resolution CT scan for his lungs.
By the time that the hospital had a bed available for Larry, he was up and alert and begging to not be admitted to the hospital so he could still make his trip to Vegas.