Is TrueLifeCare a health and wellness program?
Not in the traditional sense. Diabetes is the #1 disease condition for spending in health care today. It is also the greatest opportunity for improving risk management and decreasing costs in your health plan. TLC provides the support and accountability for better diabetes self-care behavior. This results in improved health and productivity and lower costs for persons with diabetes.
How is TrueLifeCare different from the disease management programs I’ve used or heard about in the past?
First, we are paid by providing the supplies needed for testing blood sugar…your health plan is already spending the money to pay for TLC!
Second, TLC works to engage all employees and covered dependents with diabetes to help them improve self-management and personal health. People with diabetes are all “at risk” as diabetes is a progressive condition where other health complications will develop with time. All plan members with diabetes are treated equally by TLC.
Third, the TrueLifeCare program includes the five science-proven and essential touchstones for improved diabetes self-care and better health outcomes. Especially important is the personal RN Health Coach relationship.
I believe in health & wellness programs, but why should I have a program that focuses solely on diabetes?
Good question. To start with, an employer’s health plan population usually has 8-10% of its members with diagnosed diabetes. This group of 8-10% will consume a disproportionate and higher share of the costs in the health plan, typically 25 – 30%, and sometimes more. Why?
Because diabetes and its marker of “high blood sugar” impacts a person’s entire body. It is the leading cause of heart disease, and increases the risk for stroke and depression. Diabetes is also the leading cause of blindness, kidney failure, neuropathy/nerve damage and lower limb amputations.
These complications result in more health care spending. About 2/3 of the costs in the population with diabetes are for Emergency and Hospital costs. These health events and their costs are now being reduced with the support of the TLC program.
I already have a diabetes management program, why do I need TrueLifeCare?
You might want to continue providing your current program. But as pointed out by the Northeast Business Group on Health in their recent whitepaper titled “Transforming Diabetes Management: New Directions for Employers” the traditional approaches have fallen short in addressing the crisis, and there is “no silver bullet.” The recommendation is for a combination of programs with an objective of getting as many employees with diabetes as possible engaged in a program which helps keep them active with self-care. Programs designs, such as TrueLifeCare and it’s no-new-costs model can help do this very effectively.
What is the cost of TrueLifeCare’s program?
Our program is essentially funded with a redirection of current plan spending for diabetes test supplies. Program participants have no co-pays for their supplies, providing a strong financial incentive for starting their participation. Please contact us for a no-cost, no-obligation analysis of your opportunity and current costs.
Why does TrueLifeCare include mobile health technology?
There are multiple reasons. The first is the individualized and personalized nature of our program. We provide a variety of tools and benefits so that our members can “engage” and use those which they have the most interest in.
Also, for those who want to be more “tech-savvy,” this technology can help simplify their life by eliminating the need for written log books. Readings (both glucose and blood pressure, if hypertensive) can be uploaded free to a secure health cloud account for custom reporting and trend graphs. They member can share their readings with their RN Coach and even their physician, as well, which can be of value in discussing treatments and goals.
What are some of the facts affecting my employees and plan members today that I should know?
1. Typically 8-10% of your employees probably live with diabetes, and it may be more.
2. The average total (employer and employee) annual health care spend for people with diabetes exceeds $16,000.00 in employer health plans (source: Health Care Cost Institue). This compares to just over $4,000 for persons without diabetes.
3. People with diabetes want to be healthy and feel good.
4. People with diabetes have almost three more days of absenteeism and lose an amazing 12 days of productivity…each year! (Source: American Diabetes Association).
4. Your population with diabetes may account for about 25%, and possibly 30% or more, of your total healthcare costs.
5. This cost trend is worsening each year, absent productive programs to support the needed self-care for diabetes management.
What makes TLC a game-changer?
First is that we have valid outcomes, and without creating new costs. Total hospital days for the diabetes population have been reduced more than 30%.
These positive results come from the high level of engagement of plan members with diabetes.
TLC Health Coaches are Registered Nurses who have been certified by the National Society of Health Coaches as Evidence-Based Health Coaches. Our Coaches learn to apply and actively use the skills of motivational interviewing to develop meaningful one-to-one relationships with their program members. Their skills and the personal relationship with their members help each person measurably improve diabetes self-management practices and behaviors.
Over time the Health Coach is considered a friend who lends an ear, offering encouragement and evidence-based support. The personal coaching is a key factor in the TLC program. Just like a sports team depends on their coach for strength and guidance, but not for individual performance, so does each individual member of the Nurse Coach’s “team” rely on them. Can you imagine a classroom without a teacher? It is a similar principle with the lifelong and progressive diabetes condition and the need for continuous learning and adherence to the evidence based practices.
Can my plan members keep their current physician?
Absolutely! The TLC program is here to support the treating physician’s evidence-based plan of care, to help the physician achieve better outcomes (better health) for their patient with diabetes. TLC does not take the place of doctor’s or health clinic visits.
Is the TrueLifeCare health information secure?
Yes. Our processes and procedures are HIPAA-compliant and secure.
Is TrueLifeCare an Accountable Care Organization (ACO)?
No. TLC’s program is an excellent example of one way an ACO might be successful, however.
What are the 5 Essential Touchstones for better diabetes management outcomes and living a healthier, more productive life?
The 5 Essential Touchstones require: 1) supporting evidence-based practices, 2) productive interactions with skilled professionals, 3) consistency and persistency of the productive interactions, 4) actively using key vitals readings, and 5) incentives that help encourage members to participate.
How can I encourage my plan members to enroll in TrueLifeCare once we offer it?
Make a commitment to endorse and promote the program. If you have a corporate wellness program, where points or awards can be earned, it can be helpful to include the TrueLifeCare (TLC) program as eligible for such points and awards. Plus the program itself offers incentives for participation including zero co-pays for supplies (saves the member real cash today) and also menus and recipes and supplied by TLC on a regular basis.
What’s involved in getting a Free Savings Analysis with TrueLifeCare for my company?
Be a self-insured employer and provide us with 12 months or more of your pharmacy claims data. We’ll be pleased to provide an accurate and informative analysis of the incidence and cost of diabetes in your health plan, and the opportunity for improvement and savings.
Is there ongoing reporting?
Yes. TLC will regularly receive claims and eligibility data on your health plan costs. Quarterly, TLC provides each client with Progress Notes, which are de-identified stories and comments from your participating members, providing a view into what it is like to live with and deal with the challenges presented by diabetes. Annually, TLC will coordinate with your benefits advisor to report the incidence rate of Emergency Department visits and hospital admissions and number of inpatient days for the diabetes population. You’ll see your adverse health event rates, and the direction they are headed. We believe in full transparency.
Why doesn’t my current insurer offer TrueLifeCare already?
Ask them…and do let us know!