Calling home care a "terrific concept,"
"The reimbursement model we are currently in does not even begin to cover the cost of care," Franchitto said, calling HouseCalls financially unsustainable.
The HopeHealth HouseCalls office in
But HouseCalls patient
"It's designed for people who were having trouble getting health care because they can't get to the doctor's," Vance said last week.
Both Vance, who relies on a wheelchair to get around, and her 90-year-old mother, who has dementia, are HouseCalls patients.
"Why are they closing?" Vance said, questioning whether
In March of 2015 Hope HouseCalls officials announced they had added two new physicians and a new care management service "to address the growing demand" for its three-year-old program of providing primary care home visits.
In October, when
But on Friday, Franchitto said the numbers for the primary care visitation program weren't adding up.
While an office-based primary care physician can see more than a dozen patients a day, the most home care visits possible in a day is seven to eight, Franchitto said.
A shortage of primary care physicians has also made it difficult to provide continuity of care to homebound patients, she said.
Sixty percent of the patients are in congregate living centers such as assisted living centers, all of which have been notified of the program closing, Franchitto said.
HouseCalls employed three part-time physicians and one full-time medical director who recently moved to
Most of the part-time doctors already have identified where they want to go next, Franchitto said.
Vance received a letter from HouseCalls dated
HouseCalls says two of the groups on the list -- Ideal
"We called every one of them and they are willing to take on new patients," Franchitto said.
There are no physicians listed as making house calls to the mid-Cape, said Vance, who said that as a nonprofit organization,
An analysis by the
Having doctors and nurses make house calls is not as cost-efficient as seeing patients in the office, said
The home care practices that perform best seem to be those attached to large organizations with a heavy patient caseload, Fabrizi said.
"Some of our nursing salaries are paid by the hospital," she said.
The doctors enjoy home care visits, too, said Dr.
"It's less harried and less rushed," she said. "It's a very intimate setting."
Doctors -- and the fourth year
"It's a unique experience," Lee said.
The palliative care program is more in line with
In 2010, the then-Cape-based organization merged with Alzheimer's Services of
HouseCalls patients looking for a physician can consult
"We stand ready to ensure that the patients affected by the
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