LOS ANGELES, Jan. 13, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The Emergent-Risk population represents one of the greatest threats to population health and will overwhelm the current U.S. healthcare system if something isn't done to engage these individuals in improving their health and quality of life, warned Neal Kaufman, MD, co-founder and Chief Medical Officer of DPS Health. Dr. Kaufman's comments were made last month during a joint presentation with Adam Kaufman, DPS Health CEO, at the 2014 Population Health Alliance (PHA) Forum in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Dr. Kaufman explained that common population health approaches like wellness and disease management tend not to focus on "Emergent-Risk" individuals–those who consume healthcare resources at a rate four to six times higher than the average population. Members of the Emergent-Risk cohort have mild medical conditions early in the disease trajectory. Health conditions within this category, which are frequent in any adult population and especially prevalent among those over 55 years old, include: pre-diabetes/metabolic syndrome, obesity, hyperlipidemia, hypertension, Type-2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and kidney disease, and sleep apnea, to name a few.
"Multiple trends have created the need for fresh approaches to address this group's growing clinical and economic burden," Dr. Kaufman stated. "And, as government and commercial payers pay providers based increasingly on risk adjustments, tackling the Emergent-Risk cohort is becoming a high priority."
Adam Kaufman noted that the most significant opportunity for population health improvement is in identifying and addressing the population at Emergent-Risk before health and productivity are adversely impacted, along with increased service utilization and cost. "Engaging and empowering these individuals to take charge of their lives through lifestyle and self-management intervention programs is the key to arresting their chronic disease trajectory."
Adam Kaufman Named to PHA Board of Directors
In addition to his presentation on the Emergent-Risk Cohort, Adam Kaufman was elected to serve a full term on the PHA Board of Directors. "The PHA's work in addressing and researching population health needs along the entire continuum of health is of significant benefit to the industry, agencies and policy makers. I look forward to playing an active role in moving the association forward in these challenging times in healthcare," he stated.
About DPS Health
Founded in 2004, DPS Health enhances the capacity of organizations to improve the health of their members, employees and/or patients through research-proven, web and mobile self-management support interventions. The company is dedicated to enhancing the health of Americans with chronic disease, particularly those in the Emergent-Risk category which represents a significant portion of the population. Emergent-Risk individuals can improve their overall health and avoid advancing to the high-risk, high-cost category. For additional information, visit www.dpshealth.com.
SOURCE DPS Health