Congratulations are in order for Baltimore Medical System (BMS). The largest federally qualified health center in Maryland was named a high performing practice by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). As a high performing practice BMS will now also join CMS’ Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative (TCPI) national expert panel. As a national expert BMS will contribute to healthcare improvement and cost reduction efforts across the country by sharing what they know with other practitioners.
“We are honored to be a part of the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative as it directly supports our mission to improve the health and wellness of medically underserved communities,” said Dr. Jenene Washington, BMS Chief Medical Officer in a BMS press release. “I am looking forward to sitting on the national expert panel and using our own proven successes with quality and team-based care to help other practices improve care and reduce hospital readmissions, unnecessary testing and extraneous procedures.”
BMS was selected as a high performing practice based on a recommendation from a practice transformation network in CMS’ TCPI. The recommendation was followed by a series of interviews, and performance and a data review of clinical and operational measures. The initiative aims to help more than 140,000 health care providers improve quality of care, increase patient access to information and reduce costs over the next four years by supplying them with the right tools and support.
“As a high performing practice, we also have the unique opportunity to learn and adopt best practices from other high performing centers. We are eager to begin connecting and sharing with other leaders in the healthcare industry so that we can further improve the quality of care we deliver throughout Greater Baltimore,” said Dr. Washington.
BMS has been serving underserved communities in Baltimore since 1984 when the Baltimore City Health Department approached the non-profit group about taking over four existing health department clinics. Shortly after, BMS became the first ambulatory care organization in Maryland to be accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations. BMS was also the first FQHC to be Joint Commission-accredited in the Central Eastern seaboard states.
Today, BMS is the largest Community Health Center in Maryland with five health centers serving approximately 46,000 patients, and a school-based program that serves over 1,000 Baltimore City school children annually.