HARTFORD, Conn. and WOONSOCKET, R.I., Aug. 20, 2013 /PRNewswire/
-- Aetna (NYSE: AET) announced today a new pilot program called the Aetna Rx Home Success ProgramSM. Supported by CVS Caremark (NYSE: CVS), the Aetna Rx Home Success Program works with CVS Caremark pharmacists and Dovetail Health to support Aetna members who are taking multiple medications. The program helps members manage their health through personal support from a pharmacist – including offering in-home consultations -- and focuses on those who have recently been discharged from a hospital, nursing home or rehabilitation facility.
How The Aetna Rx Home Success Program Works
Members who decide to enroll in the Aetna Rx Home Success Program are contacted by a pharmacist who will work with them to schedule an in-home visit or a detailed phone consultation. The pharmacist will review any new and/or pre-existing medications and help create a detailed care plan with the member and their doctor. The pharmacist will address potential medication-related issues, identify gaps in care, and educate members about their medicine(s). The pharmacist will also consider other risk factors, including chronic conditions, home safety, and will aid in arranging physician follow-up visits.
"We are very excited to partner with CVS Caremark and Dovetail Health on this program. By providing a personalized approach to health care we can help our members stay on track with their medications, educate them about their treatment, and prevent a repeated trip to the hospital," said Dr. William Fried, senior medical director of Aetna's Southeast Region.
More Than 1 In 4 Members Are At Risk1
Hospital readmissions due to not properly taking their medication affect nearly 3.5 million patients and result in about $15.2 billion dollars in health care costs each year2
. Aetna's innovative approach to health care, blending the expertise of CVS Caremark and a Dovetail Health pharmacist, provides a complete circle of care, ensuring positive health outcomes for its members.
"We look forward to piloting this program with Aetna as high rates of hospital readmissions result in increased costs for the patient and the payor, which can negatively impact a patient's health outcomes," said Troyen A. Brennan, M.D., M.P.H., executive vice president and chief medical officer for CVS Caremark. "Many patients who are newly discharged from a hospital or rehab facility are taking multiple medications. Trying to navigate multiple treatment guidelines provided by the patient's primary care physician and the treatment facility discharge team can be overwhelming. Our research shows that the intervention of a clinical pharmacist helps patients better understand their medications and avoid potential setbacks to recovery after returning home."
Identifying At-Risk Members
Members are identified by an Aetna case manager as either "high risk" or "moderate risk" for hospital readmission. Within two days of discharge, high-risk members are contacted to schedule an in-home medication review performed by a Dovetail pharmacist. CVS Caremark pharmacists contact the moderate risk members to schedule a medication review over the phone. All members receive ongoing support in the form of follow-up phone calls for a 30-day period. Aetna case management nurses for continuing care coordination also mentor members. After the 30 days, the member will be discharged from the program and moved back to Aetna Case Management for continued follow-up and care.
"The average patient in the program takes over ten prescription medications per day; our pharmacists are uniquely trained to optimize these difficult medication regimens and lessen associated risks," said Diane Gilworth, NP, chief clinical officer for Dovetail Health. "Working with Aetna and CVS Caremark allows us to deliver a complete and coordinated approach to reduce readmission rates for some of the highest risk patients." The six month pilot program will be offered in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Northern Virginia. Readmission rates and member satisfaction of enrollees will be measured at the conclusion of the pilot.
Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC), Report to Congress: Promoting Greater Efficiency in Medicare, June 2007, Chapter 5.
Annals of Internal Medicine; The Incidence and Severity of Adverse Events Affecting Members after Discharge from the Hospital, 2003.