A Pandemic Plan Must Include Primary Care Support

Primary Care Transformation COVID-19

In a December 28, 2020, Boston Globe Opinion Milbank Memorial Fund President Christopher F. Koller wrote that by investing in the nation’s primary care system, the incoming Biden administration can help control the pandemic — and improve health outcomes and reduce disparities in the process. President-elect Biden can build his pandemic plan, including vaccine distribution, on a strong primary care delivery system by:

  • Working with Congress to deploy newly passed COVID-19 funding in ways that more explicitly support primary care.
  • Directing the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to make telehealth changes permanent, and Medicare Advantage health plans and state Medicaid programs to do the same.
  • Directing CMS to make more payments to primary care on a per person — not a per visit — basis.
  • Supporting the development of more community health centers, which take care of 1 in 11 people in the country.
  • Supporting the deployment of community health workers as part of the primary care team to work in communities hardest hit by COVID.

Read the Opinion