Children's Health Initiative
Every child deserves a chance to thrive. In Northeast Ohio, too many children already have serious health conditions and risk factors that affect all spheres of their lives and will accompany them into adulthood. Better Health's Children’s Health Initiative will focus on high rates of childhood obesity and on improving management of childhood asthma.
Better Health is a partner in the national Choosing Wisely campaign, which was established by the American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation to reduce waste in the health care system. National estimates suggest that 30 percent of health care services are unnecessary, wasteful, and in many cases, pose a risk of harm—both medical and financial—that outweighs potential benefits. In the Choosing Wisely campaign, more than 70 medical societies share lists of "Five Things Physicians and Patients Should Question
" – tests, treatments and procedures from their medical specialty – to encourage physicians and patients to make better decisions. Consumer Reports, an organizational partner in the campaign, supports patients and families with consumer-friendly information. A free, customizable toolkit
is available for employers to use in employee communications.
Reducing Disparities in High Blood Pressure
Better Health's routine data analyses in 2012 of patient data from 56 practices across multiple health systems found a dramatic rise in blood pressure control in primary care practices of HealthSpan Physicians. Up to 90 percent of patients with high blood pressure had it under control, including African-Americans, whose improvement has persistently lagged behind Caucasian patients'. The health system had adopted a new practice for its high blood pressure patients. Better Health developed a simplified curriculum that other practices could learn and apply. Better Health practice consultants are assisting practices in adopting this best practice.
Lake Primary Care Project
The Progressive Group of Insurance Companies, Lubrizol Corp., and Lake County Schools Council are partnering with Lake Health to provide patient-centered, coordinated care for their employees. The collaborative project supports a proven health care delivery model that provides a return-on-investment for the employers and enhances the care experience for their employees and the employees’ dependents. Through the program, the employers support nurse care coordinators in Lake Health primary care. The care coordinators are essential players in the Patient-Centered Medical Home model, which evidence shows delivers better outcomes at lower costs. Better Health and Health Action Council facilitated the value-based purchasing project, and Better Health provides neutral analyses of quality data to drive ongoing results and effectiveness.
In the months preceding Ohio's expansion of Medicaid — MetroHealth, Neighborhood Family Practice and Care Alliance—all safety net organizations—enrolled 28,294 uninsured patients in CarePlus, a Medicaid-like program developed with a waiver from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Within the first nine months, the project improved the quality of care at a cost that were 25 percent below a fixed cap on medical expenditures: better care at lower lost.
Red Carpet Care
Better Health developed the Red Carpet Care pilot program, in which health care providers, insurance companies and community organizations joined forces to eliminate the barriers to health care that often lead patients to avoidable and unnecessary use of expensive emergency department and hospital services. The goal was to improve care and reduce costs of so-called "super-utilizers,"—the sickest 5 percent of the population who account for 60 percent of the nation’s health care costs. For the 67 participating patients of Medical Mutual of Ohio, the Red Carpet Care program delivered estimated savings of $317,000 over a year.