By: Lisa Sloan
Getting health care in the right place at the right time is critical for consumers’ health and their pocketbooks. That’s why UHCAN Ohio is pleased to partner with the (Greater Cincinnati) Health Collaborative in a community-wide effort to help us all MakeTheRightCall when it comes to our needs for medical attention. Having a primary care provider who is familiar with you is key to receiving medical care of the best quality that is most cost-efficient. Adults and children benefit from this type of patient/provider relationship and the Health Collaborative’s “YourHealthMatters” website is a premium tool for identifying primary care providers and related quality ratings.
Still, creating a primary care provider relationship is only the first step in optimizing your healthcare experience. When illness strikes it is sometimes difficult to know whether to call the doctor or head straight to the emergency room. It is important to know that misuse or overuse of the emergency department can actually have a negative impact on individual healthcare and on healthcare services to the community at-large.
MakeTheRightCall is a social media campaign designed to support SW Ohio’s community-wide goal of reducing unnecessary emergency department visits by ten percent. UHCAN Ohio has joined with YourHealthMatters on Facebook and Twitter to raise awareness of the importance of primary care usage and the reasons for unintended misuse of the emergency department, and to create a social media dialogue about MakeTheRightCall experiences and opinions.
Community organizations and employers across the region are supporting the Campaign, including partners Council on Aging, Health Care Access Now, and many United Way agencies. And now, Collaborative volunteers, including UHCAN Ohio’s Donald Washington, are reaching out to pastors, health navigators, and others involved in the implementation of the Affordable Care Act with a strategy of helping the newly insured make good use of their new benefits.
Whether or not you live in SW Ohio, you can do your part to support this effort:
- Share weekly MaketheRightCall Facebook and Twitter posts with friends and followers and encourage participation in the discussion.
- Share MaketheRightCall informational materials with members, employees, and clients.
- If you live in SW Ohio:
- Encourage use of YourHealthMatters.org for support in choosing a primary care physician and high-quality medical care in the Cincinnati area.
If you live outside of SW Ohio, encourage people to choose a primary care provider – such as a “patient-centered medical home” – by looking at the OPCPCC website.
Ultimately, making the right call about healthcare access benefits all of us.