Patients first for North Suffolk practice

Published 4:34 pm Thursday, September 13, 2012

North Suffolk Family Medicine has received the National Committee for Quality Assurance’s highest level of recognition as a Patient-Centered Medical Home. Some members of the Bridge Road practice are Theresa Rabey, Sheila Matthias, Jeannine Leadbeater, Lynn Hickamn, Susie Cummings, Kristy Wilson, Brittni Hunter and Bernadette Garner.

Recognition by the National Committee for Quality Assurance as a Level 3 Patient-Centered Medical Home positions North Suffolk Family Medicine to reap benefits from changes coming to the health care industry, physician Lynne Stockman says.

The practice in suite 15 at 3235 Bridge Road, established by Stockman 17 years ago, received the recognition on Aug. 11.

The committee is a private, nonprofit organization working to improve health care, and its Patient-Centered Medical Home program recognizes health care settings which foster partnerships between patients, as well as their families, and physicians.

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“I think we’re one of the first practices in Suffolk” to attain the highest recognition level, Stockman said.

“It’s all centered around quality initiatives for better patient care,” including “better communication tools that are given to the patient at the time of the visit, and after the visit is completed, to make sure there’s adequate understanding of what changes are being made to medical treatment plans.”

Focusing on quality results in “better patient medical care, which is what being a patient-centered medical home is all about,” she said.

Stockman said the health care industry is moving toward a future where Medicare, insurers and employers will insist on Patient-Centered Medical Homes, which focus more on preventive care.

Recognized health care outlets will benefit from higher rebates, she said. “It hasn’t happened yet, but we all want to try to be in the right position  … for when that time does come.”

Stockman started the practice when she moved to Suffolk from Kentucky, with husband Tom and their first child, in 1995.

Having completed her internship and residency at Riverside Regional Medical Center in Newport News, it was a return to the area. “We have a lot of family in the Suffolk and Portsmouth areas,” she said.

The couple now has three children, and Tom Stockman, who had completed seminary training in Kentucky, has now retired and looks after them.

North Suffolk Family Medicine, whose other two physicians are Jeannine Leadbeater and Colleen Naumann, is part of the Bayview Physicians Group.

The practice offers services including women’s health, lab, minor surgeries and sports physicals. Stockman is an osteopath who performs hand-on therapies.