What are care management benefits?
Chronic conditions can be a real pain, and that’s not just physically speaking. Sometimes, the daunting task of figuring out how to best take care of yourself can feel like solving a rubix cube in the dark.
Care management, sometimes called chronic care management (CCM), gives your employees access to resources that help them coordinate comprehensive care plans for chronic conditions like diabetes, depression, or heart disease. These benefits give your employees the tools and support to better manage their conditions and take preventative measures.
Using this benefit, your employees will have access to a care team who will create a personalized treatment program for their unique health needs. Through every step of their health journey, their care team has their back.
Their team may also leverage innovative health tools — like virtual access, preventative screening, or text messaging communications — to level up on their care quality and ease of access.
How do employees use care management benefits?
Navigating the complicated world of chronic care can be extremely confusing and downright exhausting. CCMs can help your employees traverse the maze that is the healthcare system and see improved results in their health management through the use of all the tools available.
One of your supervisors hasn’t been feeling quite herself lately. She’s always been a fairly energetic person, but lately she’s been reaching for a second (or third) cup of coffee after lunchtime. After some tests, she gets some jarring news from her doctor: she’s been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Suffice to say this diagnosis caught her off guard — and to be honest, it’s scary. She knows she has to make some life changes, but doesn’t know where to start.
Using her care management benefit, she’s referred to a comprehensive care management team. Together, they help educate your supervisor about her diagnosis, collect data to assess and coordinate care, develop a care plan with clear goals in mind, and then regularly check in with your employee to be sure she stays on track.
Soon enough, she’ll learn how to manage and live with their condition. Even better, she knows that she doesn’t have to handle this alone.
How do care management benefits impact employees?
As of 2018, 51.8% Americans (over 150 million people) live with, at minimum, one form of chronic condition — and that number is expected to jump to over 171 million within the next eight years. There’s a good chance that some of your employees are already living with one or more chronic conditions.
In spite of the high rate of chronic conditions, millions struggle to navigate their care. A large part of that is a lack of education about their conditions and how to manage them. And no wonder! Everyone’s health status and needs are different — and even though there’s a sea of information and guidance available to them, a lot of it is obscured by complicated health jargon.
A multifaceted care management program can provide your employees with the valuable resources they need to cope with their condition and take preventative measures. This can help reduce hospital visits, save them time and money, improve their quality of life, and improve their mental health.
Care management benefits can also increase your employee’s engagement in their care plan, making them feel more in control of their health. Something as simple as text messages from your employee’s care management team can lead to a 17.8% increase in medication adherence and engagement.
Dealing with a chronic condition can also have a massive impact on mental health, leading to depression and anxiety. It’s so easy to feel helpless and frightened when you don’t know anything about your condition. But knowing you have the support you need to manage your health even if things get bad – well, that’s a big source of hope.
They say knowledge is power — and these benefits can sure pack a punch of power. By giving folks the tools and support to manage their health needs, care management can be a tremendous source of strength and perspective for your employees.
Why should employers offer care management benefits?
Managing chronic conditions can have a huge mental, emotional, and financial toll on your employees, but it can also take a toll on the employer as well. 90% of healthcare spending goes toward treatment of chronic physical and mental health conditions. By implementing a robust care management program, you can help reduce your healthcare costs and save money while taking care of your company’s most valuable asset: your employees.
Because care management emphasizes preventative measures, this can help avoid more intrusive procedures, which can be costly and stressful for your employees and have a big impact on overall morale and productivity. And by catching conditions before they become severe (and before they require pricey treatments and time off), your bottom line has another line of protection.
According to the CDC, workplace health programs can save employers 25% in costs for healthcare and disability management claims. Hypertension is the most common chronic condition, and studies show a 52% reduction in disability costs when caught early through preventative care screening.
Offering a care management program also shows your employees that you care about their wellbeing and want them to have the best care possible — that you’re committed to helping them live their best lives, regardless of what health needs they may have.