Evidence for the effect of disease management: is $1 billion a year a good investment?
ABSTRACT To assess the evidence for the effect of disease management on quality of care, disease control, and cost, with a focus on population-based programs.
We conducted a literature search for and a structured review of studies on population-based disease management programs, as well as for reviews and meta-analyses of disease management interventions. We identified 3 evaluations of large-scale population-based programs, as well as 10 meta-analyses and 16 systematic reviews, covering 317 unique studies.
We found consistent evidence that disease management improves processes of care and disease control but no conclusive support for its effect on health outcomes. Overall, disease management does not seem to affect utilization except for a reduction in hospitalization rates among patients with congestive heart failure and an increase in outpatient care and prescription drug use among patients with depression. When the costs of the intervention were appropriately accounted for and subtracted from any savings, there was no conclusive evidence that disease management leads to a net reduction of direct medical costs.
Although disease management seems to improve quality of care, its effect on cost is uncertain. Most of the evidence to date addresses small-scale programs targeting high-risk individuals, while only 3 studies evaluate large population-based interventions, implying that little is known about their effect. Payers and policy makers should remain skeptical about vendor claims and should demand supporting evidence based on transparent and scientifically sound methods.
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ABSTRACT: Health coaching interventions aim to identify high-risk enrollees and encourage them to play a more proactive role in improving their health, improve their ability to navigate the health care system, and reduce costs. Evaluate the effect of health coaching on inpatient, emergency room, outpatient, and prescription drug expenditures. Quasiexperimental pre-post design. Health coaching participants were identified over the 2-year time period 2009-2010. Propensity scores facilitated matching eligible participants and nonparticipating controls on a one-to-one basis using nearest kernel techniques. Difference in differences logistic and generalized linear models addressed the impact of health coaching on the probability of incurring costs and levels of inpatient, emergency room, outpatient, and prescription drug expenditures, respectively. Administrative claims data were used to analyze health services expenditures preparticipation and post health coaching participation time periods. Of the 6940 health coaching participants, 1161 participated for at least 4 weeks and had a minimum of 6 months of claims data preparticipation and postparticipation. Although the probability of incurring costs and expenditure levels for emergency room services were not affected, the probability of incurring inpatient expenditures and levels of outpatient and total costs for health coaching participants fell significantly from preparticipation to postparticipation relative to controls. Estimated outpatient and total cost savings were $286 and $412 per person per month, respectively. Health coaching led to significant reductions in outpatient and total expenditures for high-risk plan enrollees. Future studies analyzing both health outcomes and claims data are needed to assess the cost-effectiveness of health coaching in specific populations.Medical Care 02/2015; 53(2):133-40. DOI:10.1097/MLR.0000000000000287 · 2.94 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: We examined the impact of a disease management (DM) program offered at the University of Minnesota for those with various chronic diseases. Differences-in-differences regression equations were estimated to determine the effect of DM participation by chronic condition on expenditures, absenteeism, hospitalizations, and avoidable hospitalizations. Disease management reduced health care expenditures for individuals with asthma, cardiovascular disease, congestive heart failure, depression, musculoskeletal problems, low back pain, and migraines. Disease management reduced hospitalizations for those same conditions except for congestive heart failure and reduced avoidable hospitalizations for individuals with asthma, depression, and low back pain. Disease management did not have any effect for individuals with diabetes, arthritis, or osteoporosis, nor did DM have any effect on absenteeism. Employers should focus on those conditions that generate savings when purchasing DM programs. This study suggests that the University of Minnesota's DM program reduces hospitalizations for individuals with asthma, cardiovascular disease, depression, musculoskeletal problems, low back pain, and migraines. The program also reduced avoidable hospitalizations for individuals with asthma, depression, and low back pain.Journal of occupational and environmental medicine / American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 02/2015; 57(2):117-23. DOI:10.1097/JOM.0000000000000385 · 1.80 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Chronic diseases and conditions typically require long-term monitoring and treatment protocols both in traditional settings and in out-patient frameworks. The economic burden of chronic conditions is a key challenge and new and mobile technologies could offer good solutions. mHealth could be considered an evolution of eHealth and could be defined as the practice of medicine and public health supported by mobile communication devices. mHealth approach could overcome limitations linked with the traditional, restricted, and highly expensive in-patient treatment of many chronic pathologies. Possible applications include stepped mHealth approach, where patients can be monitored and treated in their everyday contexts. Unfortunately, many barriers for the spread of mHealth are still present. Due the significant impact of psychosocial factors on disease evolution, psychotherapies have to be included into the chronic disease protocols. Existing psychological theories of health behavior change have to be adapted to the new technological contexts and requirements. In conclusion, clinical psychology and medicine have to face the “chronic care management” challenge in both traditional and mHealth settings.Frontiers in Psychology 01/2015; 6. DOI:10.3389/fpsyg.2015.00407 · 2.80 Impact Factor