Discharge Planning Advisor

RTI reviews Medicare chronic care programs

Eight Medicare chronic care improvement demonstrations cost more than they saved in their first six months, according to an early review of the programs by RTI International.

The initiative is designed to test a P4P contracting model and intervention strategies for chronically ill Medicare beneficiaries while achieving savings. Authorized by the Medicare Modernization Act, the programs target Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries with heart failure and diabetes.

The programs primarily use disease management organizations and health insurers, but also integrated delivery systems and physician group practices. The efforts were directed primarily at providing participants with telephonic care management services, including nurse-based and other education and coaching.