Transforming Primary Healthcare for Women

Prepared for The Commonwealth Fund


Primary healthcare plays a vital role in women’s health throughout all stages of life. But as the COVID-19 pandemic has made apparent, the primary care system in the United States often fails to meet the full range of women’s healthcare needs. Primary healthcare is associated with positive health outcomes; regions that have more primary healthcare providers are associated with lower rates of hospitalization, cancer mortality, heart disease and stroke.

Primary healthcare is essential in responding to women’s unique health needs through advanced age and in bridging care during life transitions, from puberty and reproduction to menopause. As women age and experience such transitions, they require the care and attention of a primary healthcare provider who can monitor their evolving needs, make connections across specialty services and understand emerging patterns that may indicate future health risks. Achieving the vision of comprehensive primary healthcare for women is critical to improving health outcomes, bending the cost curve and promoting health equity.

In a new two-part report prepared in partnership with The Commonwealth Fund, Manatt Health presents a vision for achieving the kind of primary care that women in America want and need. In “Part 1: A Framework for Addressing Gaps and Barriers,” we examine the array of care gaps and structural barriers that inhibit primary healthcare in the United States from meeting the needs of women of all ages and socioeconomic backgrounds. In “Part 2: The Path Forward,” we explore existing and emerging care models, technology-enabled solutions and business approaches that have the potential to close the gaps and barriers in primary healthcare for women within the next decade.

To access Part 1 of the report, click here.

To access Part 2 of the report, click here.

Authors:

Laurie Zephyrin, M.D., Vice President, Delivery System Reform, The Commonwealth Fund

Lisa Suennen, Leader, Manatt Digital and Technology

Pavitra Viswanathan, Consultant, Manatt Health

Jared Augenstein, Director, Manatt Health

Deborah Bachrach, Partner, Manatt Health

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