Monday, April 5, 2010

Disease Management: A $2.3 Billion Industry That Speaks to the Wisdom of Markets

Looking for a way to convince naysayers that the disease management industry is not only surviving, but thriving? Look no further than this well written 'DM Grows, Though Under Fire' article appearing in Managed Care Magazine. Despite an awful economy and decreases in covered lives, DM industry revenues in 2009 increased to $2.3 billion. Compared to previous years, the percent increase was 'only' in the single digits.

Despite the deserved success of DM, the article hints that the Disease Management Care Blog's friends in the industry are continuing to fret about their second class status among academics and policy makers. Be of good cheer, says the DMCB: Chris DeMuth may have it right. It should be no surprise that the evidence-based dons would be unmoved by DM's prosperity. After all, they favor centralized rationality as the answer to organizing health care and view markets as an antiquated impediment to their plans for the proper, appropriate and approved application of science.

In the meantime, according to the 'DM Grows' article, nimble DM companies are finding ways to engage patients in achieving evidence-based approaches to care with motivational interviewing, assessing readiness to change, focusing on medication compliance, tackling undetected depression and coordinating care for more and more diseases. Faced with plenty of successful anecdotes from an appreciative workforce, rigorous in-house assessments of financial returns and a greater appreciation for the value-creation that comes from health, the 'steely-eyed, green-shaded CFOs and actuaries of corporate America' are buying it: figuratively and literally.

Who can blame them? Compared to what the Feds will be spending between borrowed Yuan and American tax dollars, they've calculated that $2.3 billion is a good investment.

If readers are looking for a way to convince more companies and insurers that they should invest in DM,the DMCB suggests giving them a reprint of this article. When they see what their competition is up to and why, they'll quickly change their minds.

And hopefully, our academic friends will stay out of the way.

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