Helping Patients Make Diabetes More Manageable

Diabetes can be difficult for patients to manage. It requires day-to-day and even hour-to-hour attention. Patients can find it difficult to keep track of which medications they should be taking or when to check blood glucose levels. Further, many patients may only see their doctors once every 4 months. In between those visits, they can benefit from additional support. And, CVS Health is uniquely positioned to help these patients. 

Care and support backed by advanced analytics

Last year, CVS Health launched the Transform Diabetes Care program with the goal of helping pharmacy benefit management (PBM) members improve medication adherence, A1C control, and lifestyle management. This program uses an advanced analytics platform to help identify appropriate interventions tailored to individual needs. 

Specifically, imagine that a PBM member, enrolled in the program, goes into a CVS Pharmacy to pick up their diabetes medication(s). A pharmacist offers in-person counseling on how to manage diabetes and the importance of staying adherent to medications. In addition, the member receives two screening visits per plan year at a MinuteClinic at no out-of-pocket cost, and during these visits a nurse practitioner or physician’s assistant checks the member’s BMI, blood pressure and cholesterol to help prevent diabetes-related complications. Details of the MinuteClinic visit are shared with the member’s physician via the member’s electronic health record to help connect the member’s care. The member can also opt to receive a connected glucometer, which shares blood glucose information via the health cloud to a pharmacist-led team. Altogether, this enables better, more comprehensive support for the member as well as the ability to identify potential issues and intervene as appropriate, ultimately helping the member achieve better outcomes. 

Improving outcomes while reducing costs

Medical costs for diabetes patients are more than twice as high as they are for patients without diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association.American Diabetes Association. “Economic Costs of Diabetes in the U.S. in 2012.” Diabetes Care. April 2013.  The cost of care associated with diabetes has been a leading driver of gross costs for our PBM clients in recent years. However, more effective management of diabetes could save payors up to $36 million per 100,000 patients covered, according to a CVS Health analysis of data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

It is difficult for patients to track and understand multiple health indicators while trying to make lifestyle changes and juggling several medications, especially without support. Through Transform Diabetes Care, CVS Health can help, which can lead to improved outcomes at lower cost.