Expansion to diabetes prevention in Medicare is on its way

This week, the Center for Medicare andStop Diabetes Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed many a change to its Medicare policies, not the least of which was a new program intended to prevent diabetes, an epidemic affecting an increasing number of Americans each year. The program could roll out nationally as early as 2018 and has already been piloted in 8 states since 2013. Because of the success the program has had so far, the CMS is allowed to scale it nationally without the approval of Congress.

In a nutshell, the program aids beneficiaries in three ways:

  1. Pre-diabetics receive nutritional coaching to improve the diet and nutritional choices they make to prevent onset.
  2. Patients participate in a lifestyle intervention program to adjust mindset and instill healthy values once nutritional coaching program ends.
  3. Beneficiaries are encouraged to engage in moderate physical exercise throughout the program.

We are encouraged by the positive results participants have experienced so far. Pre-diabetics with high blood sugar saw particularly great results; patients who attended at least 4 sessions lost 5% of body weight.

The program is expected to increase reimbursement of services for clinicians (including RDs) in the amount of >$500 million nationwide. We at Healthie look forward to watching the development of this initiative closely and consider the program a promising enterprise and hope to see it implemented nationwide in the future.

Check out this article to learn more!

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