LAS VEGAS — Aetna Better Health of Nevada1, the Medicaid managed care business of Aetna®, a CVS Health® company (NYSE:CVS), today announced results from a pilot program with Vegas Roots, a Las Vegas-based non-profit that serves as a catalyst for positive change in the health of low-income communities.
Vegas Roots’ community-based wellness program, Well Women of Color, created the DIVA (Diabetes Intervention for a Victorious and Active Life) program for women diagnosed with Type I, Type II diabetes or pre-diabetes. Aetna Medicaid provided $7,700 in funding for the 16-week virtual pilot. The program was designed to reduce weight and HbA1c levels and reduce or eliminate medications related to the disease, with the ultimate goal of managing the disease with lifestyle changes and diet modifications.
“Collaborations like these allow us to support traditionally underserved communities by working together to address health inequities and improve health outcomes,” said Lorry Bottrill, Southwest Territory Leader, Aetna Medicaid. “Not only were many of the pilot participants able to meet or exceed their goals, they were provided with the tools and information that will enable them to maintain a healthy lifestyle now that the program has concluded.”
The DIVA curriculum offered a cultural- and faith-based approach geared primarily for women of color and designed to ensure what participants learned was relatable, adaptable and doable. Tools included meal and fitness plans, nutrition education, chef demonstrations and natural food remedies. Additionally, participants regularly met with nurses to discuss their physical health status, garner tips, develop a sense of self-advocacy, and increase their comfort level when working with clinicians.
Of the participants who registered for the program, 27% reduced their fasting glucose numbers by an average of 30 points. Additionally, program participants lost an average of 11 pounds. Two participants were able to completely eliminate their medication, based on physician orders. All of the women who completed the program survey said they were 100% satisfied with the program.
“Thanks to Aetna’s support, the women in the program are leading healthier lives and making better choices when it comes to nutrition and exercise,” said Rosalind Brooks, Vegas Roots founder. “And, as women of color who face health inequities, they are becoming empowered to live the healthy lives that once seemed so far out of reach.”
About Aetna Medicaid
Aetna Medicaid Administrators LLC (Aetna Medicaid), a CVS Health company, has over 30 years of experience managing the care of the most medically vulnerable, using innovative approaches and a local presence in each market to achieve both successful health care results and effective cost outcomes. Aetna Medicaid has particular expertise serving high-need Medicaid members, including those who are dually eligible for Medicaid and Medicare. Currently, Aetna Medicaid owns and/or administers Medicaid managed health care plans under the names of Aetna Better Health and other affiliate names. Together, these plans serve approximately 2.8 million people in 15 states, including Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia and Texas. For more information, see www.aetnabetterhealth.com.
About Vegas Roots
Vegas Roots Community Garden (formerly Tonopah Community Garden) is a community-based nonprofit organization in Las Vegas, Nevada. Opened and operated by our parent organization Together We Can, the garden utilizes over four acres of vacant property right near Downtown Las Vegas. Since its establishment in March 2010, Vegas Roots continues to be our city’s FIRST and ONLY urban farm. For more details visit www.vegasroots.org.