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Addressing Psychosocial Adversity within the Patient-Centered Medical Home: Expert-Created Measurable Standards


Bair-Merritt, Megan H.; Mandal, Mahua; Garg, Arvin; & Cheng, Tina L. (2015). Addressing Psychosocial Adversity within the Patient-Centered Medical Home: Expert-Created Measurable Standards. Journal of Primary Prevention, 36(4), 213-225. PMCID: PMC4827699


The Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) may be improved by embedding identification and response for patients’ experiences with psychosocial adversity, but how this might optimally occur in practice has not been well-specified. We sought input from an expert panel to define feasible elements that could adapt the PCMH to adequately respond to patients’ experiences with psychosocial adversity. From December 2012 through September 2013, we used a Delphi process to systematically obtain expert opinions and reach consensus. We invited 37 experts to participate in three successive and iterative rounds of questionnaires, with each round based on aggregated, de-identified data from the prior round. We first asked experts to generate elements to adapt the PCMH, using the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA’s) established six PCMH standards as the foundation. We then asked the experts to rate these elements on a 5-point Likert scale, and finally specify what they considered the most and least valuable elements. Eighteen of the 37 (49%) invited experts responded to the first survey, and constituted our sample. Experts identified 35 elements that fell under the six NCQA standards. The top rated elements included using a screening tool to identify adversity; training providers to address psychosocial adversity; having a team member with mental health expertise; providing culturally-competent care; and having written patient information related to adversity and coping. This study derived key elements that may enhance the PCMH’s ability to improve patient outcomes by purposefully identifying and responding to their psychosocial adversity.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Journal of Primary Prevention


Bair-Merritt, Megan H.
Mandal, Mahua
Garg, Arvin
Cheng, Tina L.