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Is It Time for a New Approach to Condition Management?

Traditional disease management (DM) centers around a nurse outbound-call model covering a wide variety of conditions. Nurses are housed in call centers or work virtually to engage participants in proper management of their chronic condition. But is this model working? We’re not sure it is. Engagement rates are low, the condition list is long, and ROI evidence is spotty.

What if we think about condition management in a new way?

What might that look like, and how would it change the condition management experience? How about a whole-person approach that takes all of an individual’s health risks and conditions into consideration, not just one? What if that approach combined a human element in the form of a health coach with clinical oversight, along with support through relevant, personalized online tools? A new approach could “automagically” upload condition data, such as glucose readings for diabetics, weight for CHF, or blood pressure for CAD patients from home devices. And mobile-enabled apps would let them see their data on demand, even when they’re not sitting in front of a computer.

What if we narrowed the focus to five key conditions, as traditional disease management did – CAD, CHF, COPD, asthma, and diabetes – with an emphasis on evidence of ROI?

What if we change the role of the health coach?

The health coach could focus on what’s going well, along with the challenges the individual is facing, helping them define and set goals – not just around their condition, but around eating, exercise, and managing stress associated with their condition – or life stressors in general.

These are the kinds of questions we ask ourselves, and the kinds of options we consider. As a result, we think it’s time to take a disruptive approach to disease management. This entails a whole-person approach to health management across the continuum – a condition management initiative that incorporates online and mobile tools, with support from a health coach.

Stay tuned for more information upcoming in our Sept 18 webinar on “Condition Management: Taking a Disruptive Approach for Better Outcomes.”

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