“Care coordination” means different things to different people and organizations. As a result, no consensus definition has evolved. But many different organizations and publications have published their definition of care coordination.
Here is a roundup of eight definitions of care coordination.
1. Patient/Family Perspective: “Care coordination is any activity that helps ensure that the patient’s needs and preferences for health services and information sharing across people, functions, and sites are met over time. ”
2. Health Care Professionals Perspective: “Care coordination is a patient- and family-centered, team-based activity designed to assess and meet the needs of patients, while helping them navigate effectively and efficiently through the health care system. Clinical coordination involves determining where to send the patient next, what information about the patient is necessary to transfer among health care entities, and how accountability and responsibility is managed among all health care professionals. Care coordination addresses potential gaps in meeting patients’ interrelated medical, social, developmental, behavioral, educational, informal support system, and financial needs in order to achieve optimal health, wellness, or end-of-life outcomes, according to patient preferences.”
3. System Representatives Perspective: “Care coordination is the responsibility of any system of care to deliberately integrate personnel, information, and other resources needed to carry out all required patient care activities between and among care participants (including the patient and informal caregivers). The goal of care coordination is to facilitate the appropriate and efficient delivery of health care services both within and across systems.”
4. “Care coordination synchronizes the delivery of a patient’s health care from multiple providers and specialists. The goals of coordinated care are to improve health outcomes by ensuring that care from disparate providers is not delivered in silos, and to help reduce health care costs by eliminating redundant tests and procedures.”
5. “At its core, care coordination is just what the name implies: a mechanism through which teams of health care professionals work together to ensure that their patients’ health needs are being met and that the right care is being delivered in the right place, at the right time, and by the right person.”
6. “Care Coordination is a multidimensional concept that encompasses — among many other facets of healthcare organization and delivery — the effective communication between patients and their families, caregivers, and healthcare providers; safe care transitions; a longitudinal view of care that considers the past, while monitoring delivery of care in the present and anticipating the needs of the future; and the facilitation of linkages between communities and the healthcare system to address medical, social, educational, and other support needs, in alignment with patient goals.”
7. “Care coordination is a person-and-family-centered, assessment-driven, team approach designed to meet the needs and preferences of individuals while enhancing the care giving capabilities of families and service providers. Care coordination addresses the natural relationships between behavioral, developmental, educational, financial, medical, and social needs of an individual in order to optimize health and wellness outcomes.”
8. “The organization of your treatment across several health care providers. Medical homes and accountable care organizations are two common ways to coordinate care.”