Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

VA Health Systems Research

Go to the VA ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

VA home-based primary care interdisciplinary team structure varies with Veterans' needs, aligns with PACE regulation.

Chan CS, Davis D, Cooper D, Edes T, Phibbs CS, Intrator O, Kinosian B. VA home-based primary care interdisciplinary team structure varies with Veterans' needs, aligns with PACE regulation. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. 2021 Jul 1; 69(7):1729-1737.

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions


BACKGROUND: Interdisciplinary team (IDT) care is central to home-based primary care (HBPC) of frail elders. Traditionally, all HBPC disciplines managed a patient (Full IDT), a costly approach to maintain. The recent PACE (Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly) regulation provides for a flexible approach of annual assessments from a core team with involvement of additional disciplines dependent upon patient needs (Core+). Current Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) HBPC guidance specifies Full IDTs care for medically complex and functionally impaired Veterans similar to PACE participants. We evaluated whether VA HBPC has adopted the flexible structure of the PACE regulation, aligned to Veteran needs. DESIGN: Cross-sectional analysis. SETTING: All 139 VA HBPC programs administered across 379 sites. PARTICIPANTS: About 55,173 Veterans enrolled in HBPC during fiscal year 2018. MEASUREMENTS: Patients' HBPC physician, nurse, psychologist/psychiatrist, social worker, therapist, dietitian, and pharmacist visits were grouped into interdisciplinary team types. Patient frailty was classified using VA HNHR v2 (High-Need High-Risk version 2, a measure of high, medium, and low risk of long-term institutionalization). Medical complexity was measured by clusters of impairment in the JEN frailty index (JFI). JFI clusters were validated by VA's Nosos measure to project cost and Care Assessment Need (CAN) measure of hospitalization and mortality risk. RESULTS: HBPC provided Full IDT care to 21%, Core+ care to 54%, and Home Health+ (HHA+) care (skilled home health services plus additional disciplines, without primary care) to 16% of Veterans. Team type was associated with medical complexity (X 2863.5 [66 df], p < 0.0001). High-risk Veterans (72% of sample) were more likely to receive Full IDT care (X 62.9, 1 df), p < 0.0001), while low-risk Veterans (28%) were more likely to receive HHA+ care (X 314.8, 1 df, p < 0.0001). CONCLUSION: There is a strong association between HBPC team patterns and patient frailty, indicating tailoring of care to match Veteran needs.

Questions about the HSR website? Email the Web Team

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.