Disease management programs aim to improve coordination of care and outcomes for the chronically ill. They work great in theory, but not so well in practice. Medicare has been encouraging disease management through demonstration projects, which could lead to a wider rollout. However, it’Â’s hard to recruit patients as this recent news from Modern HealthCare indicates.
PacifiCare Health Systems will end a Medicare demonstration project for heart-failure management 10 months early because of a lack of interest among seniors. PacifiCare said two years into the HeartPartners project it has managed to enroll only 25% of projected participants. “After a considerable amount of energy on our part, the interest just isn’t there,” PacifiCare spokesman Tyler Mason said. PacifiCare expected to receive $300 million in reimbursements from Medicare over the three-year contract.
There are easier ways to make $300 million than to motivate heart failure patients.January 16, 2006