New funding mechanisms offer opportunity to improve access to diabetes education
Innovative funding provides opportunity to expand access to diabetes education
To accelerate the shared government and provider objectives of reducing diabetes related complications and cost, innovative funding that expands access to diabetes education is necessary. The methods for achieving the objectives may be non-traditional. For example, Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment (DSRIP) programs provide funding to states in order to advance Medicaid payment reform and improve access to care, while reducing the cost throughout the healthcare system. Initiatives, such as DSRIP, give providers the opportunity to test new approaches with Medicaid populations in order to achieve outcomes and prevent complications at reduced costs. There is an opportunity to use DSRIP funding to supplement in-person DSME programs with virtual and telephonic education, which would improve access in urban areas, where in-person DSME classes might be inconveniently scheduled, and in rural areas that lack programs altogether. There is also an innovative national funding mechanism through the Medicare Advantage Value-Based Insurance Design (VBID) Program. Through this model, eligible plans can offer varied benefits for enrollees with diabetes to reduce cost-sharing and offer additional services.
This is a prime opportunity to offer innovative diabetes self-management education programs that bridge the access and coverage gaps. If we rethink who pays for DSME, how it is delivered, and how people are given options to engage in DSME, it will be more likely that people with diabetes will receive the education that they need to improve their health.
David Weingard is CEO of Fit4D.