Document Type


Subject Area(s)

Adolescent; Adult; Community Health Centers (standards); Cross-Sectional Studies; Databases, Factual; Delivery of Health Care; Female; Humans; Logistic Models; Male; Middle Aged; Patient-Centered Care; Primary Health Care (organization & administration); Quality Indicators, Health Care; Quality of Health Care (organization & administration); Retrospective Studies; United States; United States Health Resources and Services Administration; Young Adult


BACKGROUND: Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) adoption is an important strategy to help improve primary care quality within Health Resources and Service Administration (HRSA) community health centers (CHC), but evidence of its effect thus far remains mixed. A limitation of previous evaluations has been the inability to account for the proportion of CHC delivery sites that are designated medical homes.

METHODS: Retrospective cross-sectional study using HRSA Uniform Data System (UDS) and certification files from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) and the Joint Commission (JC). Datasets were linked through geocoding and an approximate string-matching algorithm. Predicted probability scores were regressed onto 11 clinical performance measures using 10% increments in site-level designation using beta logistic regression.

RESULTS: The geocoding and approximate string-matching algorithm identified 2615 of the 6851 (41.8%) delivery sites included in the analyses as having been designated through the NCQA and/or JC. In total, 74.7% (n = 777) of the 1039 CHCs that met the inclusion criteria for the analysis managed at least one NCQA- and/or JC-designated site. A proportional increase in site-level designation showed a positive association with adherence scores for the majority of all indicators, but primarily among CHCs that designated at least 50% of its delivery sites. Once this threshold was achieved, there was a stepwise percentage point increase in adherence scores, ranging from 1.9 to 11.8% improvement, depending on the measure.

CONCLUSION: Geocoding and approximate string-matching techniques offer a more reliable and nuanced approach for monitoring the association between site-level PCMH designation and clinical performance within HRSA's CHC delivery sites. Our findings suggest that transformation does in fact matter, but that it may not appear until half of the delivery sites become designated. There also appears to be a continued stepwise increase in adherence scores once this threshold is achieved.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)


© The Author(s). 2020 Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated in a credit line to the data.

APA Citation

Bell, N., Wilkerson, R., Mayfield-Smith, K., & Lòpez-De Fede, A. (2020). Association of patient-centered medical home designation and Quality Indicators Within HRSA-funded Community Health Center Delivery Sites. BMC Health Services Research, 20(980).

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