Updated: 06/22/2013 7:20 PM KSTP.com By: Joy Lim Nakrin
Hennepin County Medical Center is getting national recognition for a preventative care program keeping patients out of the emergency room for repeat visits.
HCMC's Coordinated Care Center received the National Association of Public Hospitals' 2013 Gage Award for Improving Population Health.
After studying utilization patterns, HCMC found that 3 percent of its patients represented 50 percent of its costs. Hospital officials believed primary preventative care could be a solution.
Josh Horn of HCMC's Coordinated Care Clinic explains, "What our target population is are those who have medical complications and diseases that bring them into the hospital frequently."
Just one year after launching the clinic, HCMC reports that the number of emergency department visits dropped by 37 percent.