LVHN physician is co-recipient of Lifetime Achievement Award

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A LVHN physician, William L. Miller, MD, MA  has been recognized for his lifetime contributions to research and scholarly activity in family medicine.

Miller, the Leonard Parker Pool Chair of Lehigh Valley Health Network‘s (LVHN) department of family medicine, is a co-recipient of The Society of Teachers of Family Medicine’s Curtis G. Hames Research Award.

Benjamin Crabtree, PhD, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, has been recognized along with Miller.

Miller and Crabtree began a research partnership at the University of Connecticut‘s department of family medicine 30-years ago.

Their efforts centered on transforming primary care by understanding how health and illness are “whole person” events and how practices change and improve accordingly. 

Over the years, they’ve refined approaches to research with the goal of improving primary care clinical encounters and practice performance.

A statement released by the LVHN said Miller and Crabtree were leaders in the first wide-reaching national demonstration of the patient-centered medical home concept.

Miller has been a co-investigator for 11 National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants, two international grants and several smaller grants with the goal of achieving better primary care.

The research was based on answering several questions including “What goes on in primary care practices–who is seen, what are their problems and what happens in the exam room?”

Miller says the information led to several trials to better learn how to improve primary care practices and how to change them.

Miller and Crabtree became leaders in the first large demonstration project for the Patient-Centered Medical Home, or the National Demonstration Project.

Said Miller,  “We learned that health policy and external financial factors made much change difficult.  So then we studied what policies were friendlier to primary care using comparative evaluation across several countries.”

Miller says their most recent work involves studying the innovations currently happening in primary care and how to duplicate the best practices elsewhere.

Miller and Crabtree have studied over 900 primary care practices, several thousand patient encounters in multiple states and six international locations.

“What excites and inspires me the most,” Miller says, “is being able to apply the research findings and identified innovations here at home in the Lehigh Valley for the benefit of all your health.”

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