Health plan is one of nine organizations nationally to earn the Health Equity Accreditation Plus designation
SOUTHFIELD, MI, Dec. 13, 2022 — Aetna Better Health® of Michigan, Inc., a CVS Health® company (NYSE: CVS), announced it earned Health Equity Accreditation and Health Equity Accreditation Plus from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). The accreditations recognize organizations that lead the market in providing culturally and linguistically sensitive services and that work to reduce health care inequities.
The NCQA Health Equity Accreditation evaluates how well an organization has established a standardized framework for turning health equity into a culture of continuous improvement. NCQA’s Health Equity Accreditation Plus builds on its Health Equity Accreditation framework to address inequities in care and health outcomes by:
- Partnering with community-based organizations
- Offering resources that support clinical and social needs
- Collecting data on community social risk factors and patients’ social needs
- Making clear to members and patients how their data are used, shared and protected
“Fostering an internal culture that supports diversity, equity and inclusion and closes gaps in health care is essential for meeting the needs of diverse populations,” said Teressa Smith, CEO, Aetna Better Health of Michigan, Inc. “Our work with Medicaid members is a journey and earning these accreditations demonstrate that we have the tools, systems, partnerships and resources to provide our members with the right care, while ensuring our care teams communicate clearly and efficiently with our members and with the providers dedicated to managing their overall health.”
The accreditations come after Aetna Better Health of Michigan, Inc., participated in an eight-month NCQA sponsored pilot to develop its Health Equity Accreditation Plus evaluation program. The health plan worked with NCQA to help test the concepts and application of the accreditation.
“Establishing robust health equity standards is critical to creating a health care system that works for all,” said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, Vice President and Chief Health Equity Officer, CVS Health. “Our participation in the pilot and earning Health Equity Accreditation Plus reflects our commitment to addressing health disparities and ensuring everyone in Michigan and across the country has a fair and just opportunity to be as healthy as possible.”
Advancing health equity in Michigan
Aetna Better Health of Michigan, Inc., is committed to advancing health equity in Michigan. The health plan emphasizes programs and solutions to reduce significant disparities among diverse populations, understand local social care needs, and supply network providers with data on the health plan’s diverse membership, inclusive of languages spoken and supports.
For example, having a health care provider of the same race or who speaks the same language has been associated with a better patient experience. To help improve the experience of African Americans — its largest population of members — Aetna Better Health of Michigan, Inc., invested in capabilities and built infrastructure to encourage and enable providers to identify their race and ethnicity for use in Aetna’s provider online directory. When provided, members can use the information to support their decisions when selecting providers for care.
Another illustration highlights how Aetna Better Health of Michigan, Inc., uses a host of data sources to provide a solid base for partnership development, and the exchange of information and communications. By leveraging a social care referral platform, the health plan implemented a system that identifies when a member’s needs, such as those related to housing, transportation or health care, have been met through a referral to a community resource. As a result, Aetna is able to collect and utilize this information to better enhance care coordination and drive improvement.
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 16 states, including Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia. For more information, see www.aetnabetterhealth.com.
About CVS Health
CVS Health® is the leading health solutions company, delivering care like no one else can. We reach more people and improve the health of communities across America through our local presence, digital channels and over 300,000 dedicated colleagues – including more than 40,000 physicians, pharmacists, nurses and nurse practitioners. Wherever and whenever people need us, we help them with their health – whether that’s managing chronic diseases, staying compliant with their medications or accessing affordable health and wellness services in the most convenient ways. We help people navigate the health care system – and their personal health care – by improving access, lowering costs and being a trusted partner for every meaningful moment of health. And we do it all with heart, each and every day. Follow @CVSHealth on social media.
About NCQANCQA is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving health care quality. NCQA accredits and certifies a wide range of health care organizations. It also recognizes clinicians and practices in key areas of performance. NCQA’s Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set (HEDIS®) is the most widely used performance measurement tool in health care. NCQA’s website (ncqa.org) contains information to help consumers, employers and others make more-informed health care choices. NCQA can be found online at ncqa.org, on Twitter @ncqa, on Facebook at facebook.com/NCQA.org/ and on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/company/ncqa.