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Benefits of Care Management
New research shows that CVS Caremark’s Accordant Health Services Care Management (CM) program can help control health care costs and reduce hospital admission rates. The study looked at how members of a large, national employer group who had a diagnosis of epilepsy, lupus, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease or rheumatoid arthritis utilized the Accordant CM program, as well as the program’s impact on health care costs for those patients.
Accordant Health Services, Inc. is a CVS Caremark company which proactively supports and empowers individuals with rare conditions. The program aims to improve patients’ overall health and manage their multiple and complex needs. Accordant provides health care management services to members diagnosed with 17 rare, chronic conditions and who belong to health plans or employer groups who have contracted with Accordant. Those conditions include multiple sclerosis, lupus, Parkinson's, rheumatoid arthritis, hemophilia, cystic fibrosis and sickle cell disease.
The Accordant CM program is an individualized nurse-assisted health care planning and management program designed to help increase the patient’s knowledge about his or her condition and improve self-management skills. The overall goal is to teach the patient to better manage their overall health, which can help avoid unnecessary hospitalizations and results in cost savings for the health plan or the employer.
Each enrolled patient is assigned to a nurse, who remains their primary point of contact throughout their participation in the program. The nurse develops a tailored Care Management plan for the patient and regularly assesses the patient’s knowledge and identifies any gaps in self-management skills. The nurse also consults with additional care team members including social workers, case managers and an expert medical advisory board to review care plans, provide advice and solve care coordination problems. Patients can also directly contact Accordant nurses through a telephone line that is staffed 24 hours a day or via a web-based member portal as needed.
“This research shows that the Accordant program delivers significant, meaningful and appropriate financial impact while also delivering superior care for patients.” Trip Hofer
In the recent study, health care costs and health care utilization for patients who were part of the Accordant CM program were compared to a control group of patients who were not receiving Accordant services. Overall, more than 16,000 patients were evaluated. The results revealed that health care costs per patient per year were nearly unchanged for the group enrolled in the Accordant program, while annual costs increased significantly for the unmanaged group. For example, for patients who were not enrolled in the program, average health care costs increased from about $14,000 a year to more than $16,000 a year.
The study also showed that hospital inpatient admission rates decreased slightly for the Accordant care-managed group, while the unmanaged group had a significant increase in hospital admission rates during the study period.
“In the current health care environment, achieving cost avoidance and control while maintaining positive health outcomes for patients with complicated diseases is a top priority for many payor groups,” said Trip Hofer, President of Accordant. “This research shows that the Accordant program delivers significant, meaningful and appropriate financial impact while also delivering superior care for patients.”