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Using Incentives for Chronic Disease Management in Medicaid and Medicare Members

Posted, by Deborah Merkin
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It is important for program administrators, healthcare providers, and personal caregivers to take vested interest in proactive care towards Medicare and Medicaid members with chronic diseases. Keeping members healthy is beneficial for the entire care team, preventing health complications for members can reduce costly hospital visits for both the member and the program’s payors and providers. 

Detailed care plans are a critical key to successful chronic care management and play a significant role in the member’s health and the success of the member-program relationship. Read on to learn additional strategies for effective chronic care management, and how incentives can be used as a valuable tool.

What Effective Chronic Care Management Looks Like

The largest component to effective chronic care management is a well-constructed care plan. These plans provide transparency to plan administrators, healthcare providers, members, and personal caregivers. The plan sets expectations for all involved and allows different members of the care team to hold each other accountable. As part of any comprehensive care plan, ensuring members schedule and attend preventive care appointments is also critical to disease management. Getting patients to a provider before there is a disease flare-up or health event is key to maintaining quality of life for the patient, controlling cost for the plan, and avoiding a potentially catastrophic health emergency or visit to the ER.

There are often weeks or months between care appointments and chronic disease flare-ups can develop during those periods of time. Between appointments, using Connected Care tools such as Remote Patient Monitoring is a great way to keep healthcare providers involved in members’ medical decision-making. They empower members to take an active role in their own chronic care management while allowing them to make decisions about their care and treatment with the guidance of a provider.

Another major advantage of connected care is that members don’t actually have to go to the doctor’s office. This is particularly pertinent in rural areas and for members with transportation limitations. Connected Care tools support patients by allowing providers to actively participate in disease management between appointments. This also presents an opportunity for Medicaid and Medicare plans to reward members for active care management both at and between preventive care appointments.

For patients who require close monitoring from afar, remote patient monitoring devices are easy to use for both providers and patients and can support these types of scenarios, preventing doctor’s visits when patients may be far away or unable to be seen in person.

How Incentives Can Support Chronic Care Management

Incentivizing patients to proactively manage their chronic conditions can be a compelling way to earn their compliance with care management plans and components like preventive care appointments. 

Incentives help program administrators build positive associations with proactively managing conditions and they provide motivation for members to not only make appointments but to actually show up to receive both their care and reward/incentive. 

Gift cards are easy incentives to apply to these programs since the cost can flex to fit any budget, and the cards are easy to distribute, whether they are digital eGift cards or physical gift cards. A few simple  ways to incorporate gift cards into your programs include:

  • Engage2Reward™ Choice Gift Card: If you’re not sure what brand your members may like, the Engage2Reward Choice Card allows members to redeem for the brand of their choosing.
  • Gift Card API: If you’re looking to integrate gift card delivery into a digital platform your members are already using, Engage2Reward can help. With seamless integration, the GiftCard API can enable seamless ordering and delivery of gift card incentives in the digital environment members are already using to manage their conditions.

In addition to these specific solutions, gift card incentives can promote healthy lifestyles with brands like CVS® to encourage a healthy lifestyle and Home Chef to encourage healthy eating and more. Connected care programs, as discussed earlier, like Engage4Hlth allow members to access providers and integrated program incentives remotely, right from where they live.

Chronic care management is challenging for Medicaid and Medicare members, providers, and program administrators. Chronic care management requires effort, coordination, and a patient that is motivated to take charge of their own health. Incentives can give program administrators and health care providers a tool to motivate members to comply with disease management recommendations. When chronic care is managed effectively it significantly improves the quality and longevity of the life of the member.

Visit Engage2Reward today to learn more about the programs, services, and gift cards that can help motivate your Medicare and Medicaid members to manage their chronic conditions more proactively.

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Topics: Medicaid and Medicare, Healthcare

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