Gabriela making a home visit

Promotoras de Salud: Home Visits

Siempre Salud colored logo - cropped 2 2015-08-30We are in the process of evaluating and comparing clinical outcomes of two models of follow-up care of patients with diabetes and hypertension. One is a “home care” model. Community health workers (promotoras) visit patients at their homes as often as weekly. During home visits they use a structured questionnaire, measure blood pressure and blood sugar, and record a 24-hour diet history. The promotoras attend monthly conferences where a physician adjusts and changes medications and doses. (Patients still have appointments with a physician four times per year). The other is a “clinic” model. Patients visit with a physician in the clinic every month. (Occasional patients with special needs or those who skip their clinic appointments still receive home visits).  Our initial impression is that the two models produce equally good clinical outcomes. If the analysis bears that out then we will adopt a hybrid approach. Neither model is best for everyone. Patients can select whether they want primarily home care or primarily clinic care.

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