Arkansas Practice Improves Outcomes and Revenues with McKesson EHR

Practice Partner® and PPRNet Help Physician Practice Achieve Top Scores

ATLANTA--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Cowherd Family Medical Center, a small family practice in Heber Springs, Ark., and user of McKesson’s Practice Partner®, has received one of the top scores in the nation in the Medicare Care Management Performance (MCMP) report from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The practice credits McKesson’s electronic health record (EHR) solution and its participation in the Practice Partner Research Network (PPRNet) with helping improve patient care and increase revenues.

“Since opening our practice seven years ago, we’ve increasingly relied on Practice Partner and PPRNet to more efficiently take care of our patients and monitor patient outcomes,” said Robert Cowherd, M.D. “As a result, we received one of the top MCMP scores and $50,000 in pay-for-performance dollars, which has been very helpful to our small family practice.”

Cowherd Family Medical Center was honored by CMS for its performance in delivering care to primary and chronically-ill patients in its rural community. In a state where the average colorectal screening rate is 17%, the practice has screened 85% of its age-appropriate patient population. More than 75% of its diabetic patients have had their blood sugar measured in the last six months, compared to the national average of 38%.

The practice delivers secure patient data from its Practice Partner EHR to PPRNet, where the information is translated into easy-to-read graphs and charts. Patient labs, progress notes, diagnoses and managed care milestones are documented electronically. The information enables the practice to treat patients proactively and track trends against industry benchmarks for chronic diseases. The reports also trigger maintenance checks, which are at the heart of the practice’s preventive care plan.

The combination of Practice Partner and PPRNet is helping the retirement community-based practice boost revenues as well. The practice recently brought osteoporosis checks in-house and increased its bone density screening rate from 25% to 60% of patients aged 65 or older and at-risk, which netted an additional $50,000 in reimbursements.

“The McKesson solutions helped us to identify patients that needed bone density screenings,” said Cowherd. “As a result, we’re not seeing as many patients with broken hips and bone fractures. Our healthy bottom line is a good indicator that we’ll be caring for patients for years to come.”

The combination of Practice Partner and PPRNet has helped many physician practices achieve designation as a patient-centered medical home (PCMH). PCMH is a model of care that strengthens the physician-patient relationship by enabling coordinated care. Each patient has an ongoing relationship with a personal physician who leads a team at a single location. The team takes collective responsibility for a patient’s health care needs and arranges for care with other qualified clinicians as needed.

The medical home approach is intended to result in more personalized, effective and efficient care. The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) recognizes practices that have achieved medical home status through its Physician Practice Connections – Patient-Centered Medical Home Program. Several physician practices that use Practice Partner have achieved NCQA Level 3, the highest level of recognition.

“PPRNet’s practice-based research network of electronic health records is enabling a powerful way to monitor the quality of care,” said David Henriksen, senior vice president and general manager of McKesson’s Physician Practice Solutions. “We commend Cowherd Family Medical Center and the many innovative PPRNet members for taking a proactive stance in improving the health of patients across the country.”

About PPRNet

Practice Partner Research Network (PPRNet) is a practice-based learning and research organization designed to improve healthcare in its member practices. Formed by McKesson and the Department of Family Medicine at the Medical University of South Carolina, PPRNet compiles and analyzes data documented by more than 850 healthcare providers using Practice Partner at 160 practices representing 1.8 million patients. PPRNet has received numerous grants from the Department of Health and Human Services National Institutes of Health and Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality for its quality improvement research activities.

About McKesson

McKesson Corporation, currently ranked 14th on the FORTUNE 500, is a healthcare services and information technology company dedicated to helping its customers deliver high-quality healthcare by reducing costs, streamlining processes, and improving the quality and safety of patient care. Over the course of its 177-year history, McKesson has grown by providing pharmaceutical and medical-surgical supply management across the spectrum of care; healthcare information technology for hospitals, physicians, homecare and payors; hospital and retail pharmacy automation; and services for manufacturers and payors designed to improve outcomes for patients.


McKesson Corporation
Yancey Casey, 404-338-2468
[email protected]

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