MANAGED CARE January 2010. ©MediMedia USA
Twenty million young adults between ages 19 and 29 were uninsured at some time during the past year, according to a recent survey by the Commonwealth Fund. Eighty-eight percent of young adults think it is important that Congress and the president pass health reform legislation that would assure affordable insurance for all and improve health care.... Value-based benefit designs (VBBDs) are gaining more traction among health plans. A recent HealthLeaders-InterStudy report says that three major insurers — Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Health Alliance, and Blue Shield of California —are rolling out VBBD packages to the fully insured market. VBBD reduces cost barriers to medications deemed most effective in controlling chronic diseases to drive patient compliance with treatment.... The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) issued changes to its disease management accreditation and certification requirements, adding voluntary performance reporting for five chronic conditions. With the new changes, NCQA becomes the first DM accreditation organization to use performance measures to assess the effect of programs on care for people with asthma, diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, heart failure, and ischemic vascular disease. Additional changes to the standards focus on care coordination, data integration, quality improvement, and transparency in reporting.