Cigna to begin two collaborative care programs
Health insurer Cigna Corp. plans to launch two collaborative care programs in Virginia aimed at improving the coordination of health care and lowering costs.
Cigna’s partners in the programs, which are similar to accountable care organizations, are Richmond-based Virginia Quality Care Partners (VQPC) and ChoiceHealth, a subsidiary of the North Carolina-based health system Novant Health, which owns hospitals in Virginia.
The target population for the programs is 43,000 Virginians — 40,000 people covered by Cigna who receive care from more than 1,000 VQCP-member physicians and 3,000 Cigna patients served by 35 doctors who are part of ChoiceHealth.
The programs are among five in Virginia and 105 nationally begun by Cigna. The company says the initiatives have helped close gaps in care, such as missed health screenings or prescription refills, while avoiding unnecessary emergency rooms visits, increasing preventive health appointments and improving follow-up care for patients leaving hospitals.
One key element of the programs is the utilization of registered-nurse care managers. Cigna said care managers enhance care by using Cigna data to identify patients being discharged from hospitals who are at risk for readmissions, as well as patients who are overdue for health screenings or have skipped prescription refills. The care managers are part of the physician-led care team that will help patients get the follow-up care they need.
Care managers also help patients schedule appointments, provide health education and refer patients to Cigna's clinical support programs that may be available as part of their health plan.