Aetna has awarded a grant to London-based The
King's Fund to analyse the most effective models in the United Kingdom of
closely coordinated health care for people with chronic illnesses. The results
of the two-year study have the potential to influence healthcare improvements
in the UK.
Sandip Patel of Aetna says, "Chronic health
conditions account for the largest share of healthcare spending
internationally, and we anticipate the impact to grow as populations age and
become more susceptible to multiple chronic illnesses. Effective care
coordination, particularly for patients with medically complex and disabling
conditions, holds great promise."
Care coordination is often defined as a
patient-centred, interdisciplinary approach where all of a patient's needs are
managed across providers and settings in an integrated, cost-effective manner.
Strong primary care, communication systems linking providers, professionals and
patients, targeted case management, patient engagement, and quality improvement
measures based on outcome metrics are frequently cited characteristics.
Healthcare systems are adopting care coordination
as a primary strategy to integrate care for people with multiple, long-term
chronic conditions. Chris Ham of The King's Fund says,” Studies suggest that
care coordination can deliver higher-quality services by improving
collaboration among providers and encouraging patients to be proactive in their
treatment. But we do not yet have a good understanding of which care
coordination strategies - or combinations of strategies - are the most
effective in producing the best outcomes for patients, particularly those with
complex or multiple health issues. The goal of our study is to determine the
factors that comprise best-practices models of coordinated care and develop
practical approaches that health care systems can adopt to improve patient
health for this expanding population."
The King's Fund will conduct in-depth case studies
of five geographically and socioeconomically diverse health care systems in the
UK that have demonstrated their effectiveness in delivering innovative care
coordination to older patients with complex chronic conditions. The case
studies will feature detailed analyses of how each organisation developed its
care coordination model, and the changes to services, systems or professional
roles that were required. The profiles will also detail the barriers that had
to be overcome and the conditions that facilitated adoption of the care
coordination models. Included will be the care coordination system's impact on
patient experiences, health outcomes and costs.
Through close analysis of the similarities and
differences among the five care coordination models it will study, The King's
Fund seeks to identify the core components of successful care coordination and
produce practical plans that other health care systems can incorporate into
their health care practices.
The results of The King's Fund study are expected in 2013.
International health insurance news: 6 December 2011