Bringing Patients Back into Care
Hello everyone my name is Pragosh Saini and I am serving with the National Health Corps at the Pittsburgh location from 2022-2023. As a native Pittsburgher myself, I am proud of Pittsburgh`s transformation from a steel town to a leader in healthcare. However, some individuals face barriers in accessing care, which can lead them to fall through the cracks and stop engaging with the healthcare system.
At the Squirrel Hill Health Center, I work as Patient Population Management Specialist, where I try to bring patients back into the healthcare system by calling patients who are overdue for an A1c Check, blood pressure check, or childhood vaccines. Thus, my experiences in this position have furthered my understanding of the reasons why patients stop seeing their provider. One major contributor is the inability to miss work. I have heard countless times that the first available appointment conflicts with an individual`s schedule or a patient only gets one day off and that is the only day they can see a provider. Additionally, I have seen how financial barriers can make it difficult for patients to leave the healthcare system. For instance, I remember an instance where patient fell and broke her hip when visiting family in her native country. This incidence was very costly for her, and as a result it became difficult for her to come back to America.
In the fall, I will be attending medical school, and my experiences as a Patient Population Management Specialist at the Squirrel Hill Health Center will enable me to address the barriers patients face in accessing care. Thus, as a future physician I hope to further programs that aim to bring patients back into care like evening hours or free medical care.