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The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) in Washington, DC, has announced it is actively developing a disease management (DM) certification program slated for 2001.
"More and more health plans are relying on disease management vendors to help improve their clinical performance and satisfy NCQA’s standards," says NCQA president Margaret E. O’Kane. "Certifying disease management vendors will help health plans, employers, and others determine which vendors can help them meet their goals for quality, NCQA accreditation, and health improvement."
Over the past few years, many large employers have pressed for more effective management of workers’ chronic conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease, and have even contracted directly with disease management firms, O’Kane says. While hundreds of DM programs exist, there is no formal mechanism of oversight for those programs or the organizations behind them, she adds. Many different types of organizations will be eligible to participate in the program, including DM vendors and the DM programs of managed care organizations.
For details, contact NCQA, 2000 L St., N.W., Suite 500, Washington, DC 20036. Telephone: (202) 955-3500. Fax: (202) 955-3599. Web site: www.ncqa.org.