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Project CORE: Coordinating Optimal Referral Experiences

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Demand for ambulatory subspecialty services has grown at rates that have overwhelmed many academic medical centers’ (AMCs) capacity, resulting in impaired access and long wait times for patients. This drives down patient and provider satisfaction, and leads to decreased quality of care.

Based on a model initially developed and piloted at the University of California, San Francisco, the AAMC launched Project CORE: Coordinating Optimal Referral Experiences in 2014 to help AMCs improve the referral experience for both clinicians and patients. Through Project CORE, the AAMC has partnered with more than 30 AMCs to successfully implement eConsults and enhanced referrals, tools built into the electronic medical record. Through this innovative model, CORE AMCs are improving efficiency and effectiveness at the interface between primary care and specialty care, thereby improving quality of care and access in a patient-centered way.

Learn more by downloading our CORE model overview (PDF) and the benefits and services of participation (PDF) in the CORE collaborative.

Interested in joining? Email us.


Check out the full CORE infographic featuring program data (PDF) from our first cohort of AMCs

Learn more by watching our introductory video:

The CORE community is achieving positive results and continues to grow. To date, Project CORE participants:

  • Implemented eConsults and enhanced referrals in nearly all medical and surgical specialties, as well as in pediatric specialties and a growing number of ancillary specialties
  • Completed over 23,000 eConsults as of May 2018, with more than 1,500 additional eConsults being placed every month across the first three cohorts, resulting in thousands of avoided unnecessary referrals and inefficient curbside consults
  • Achieved high levels of patient, primary care provider, and specialist satisfaction with eConsults
  • Achieved high rates of primary care provider use of the model, with more than 80% of primary care providers using eConsults on an ongoing basis at sites where the model is mature
  • Begun efforts to further scale the model and ensure sustainability, including engaging with payers and extending to external primary care providers and systems

Site Spotlights: We’re proud of the results achieved by academic medical centers (AMCs) within the CORE community. Several AMCs have agreed to share their story and you can find more in the news.

CORE in the News

CORE Participants

  • Carilion Clinic (cohort 5)
  • Dartmouth-Hitchcock (cohort 1 & pediatrics)
  • East Carolina University Physicians (cohort 2)
  • Greenville Health System (cohort 3)
  • Medical College of Wisconsin (cohort 3 & pediatrics)
  • MetroHealth System (cohort 3)
  • Ohio State University (cohort 2)
  • Oregon Health & Science University (cohort 3 & pediatrics)
  • Penn State Health (cohort 3)
  • Stanford Healthcare (cohort 5)
  • University of California, San Diego Medical Center (cohort 1)
  • University of California, San Francisco (pediatrics)
  • University of Colorado Health (cohort 3 & pediatrics)
  • University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics (cohort 1)
  • University of Michigan (cohort 2 & pediatrics)
  • University of Rochester (cohort 5)
  • University of Utah Health (cohort 3)
  • University of Vermont (cohort 5)
  • University of Virginia Medical Center (cohort 1 & pediatrics)
  • University of Washington Medicine (cohort 2)
  • University of Wisconsin (UW) Health (cohort 1 & pediatrics)
  • Vidant Health (cohort 2)
  • Wake Forest Baptist Health (cohort 2 & pediatrics)
  • Yale University - Yale Medicine (cohort 3)

Questions? Email us.


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