Health Care Providers Focus on Initiatives To Fight Chronic Conditions
Health care providers in California increasingly are focusing on ways to manage patients' chronic health conditions by using team-based initiatives to engage patients in their own health, HealthyCal reports.
More than 16 million Californians, or 44% of the state'sÂ population, have chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease or obesity. About half of them have more than one such condition.
The purpose of the initiatives is to keep patients healthier and reduce costs for the health care industry, patients and taxpayers. Several efforts under way could help lead a shift toward a more preventive health care system, according to HealthyCal.
Details of Initiatives
One such effort -- the "Team Up for Health" pilot program sponsored by the California HealthCare Foundation -- aims to link patients and their health care advocates with physician teams, while expanding the number of medical personnel who see patients and the time spent with patients. Team members make sure all tests have been performed and provide follow-up care.
CHCF also created the California Improvement Network in 2006, bringing public and private health care organizations together to share best practices. The study period ran from 2007 to 2009 but was revived this February. The network now has 14 health care organizations. CHCF publishes California Healthline.
Meanwhile, since 2008, the state Department of Managed Health Care has been combating diabetes and heart disease with its Right Care Initiative. This effort encourages physicians to prescribe effective drugs to help control the symptoms of 70% of patients with heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes.
In addition, the MacColl Institute for Healthcare Innovation in Seattle has worked with nine California academic medical centers to hone their focus on chronic disease and encourage a preventive model of treatment (Perry, HealthyCal, 8/10).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.