PITTSBURGH, Sept. 24, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- UPMC Health Plan announced that the UPMC Center for High-Value Health Care was recently awarded a $6.3 million contract from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to improve outcomes for patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and a co-existing behavioral health condition.
The focus of the study is to better understand how to design systems to manage chronic disease and will compare a technology-centric approach with a team-based, high-touch intervention.
PCORI awarded the UPMC Center for High-Value Health Care support for a five-year study with a long-term objective to enhance the ability of health care systems to better support individuals with chronic diseases like IBD and behavioral health conditions, reduce variations in practice, connect patients with care that is best for them, and improve meaningful, patient-centered health outcomes.
This PCORI study is related to a recently completed one-year pilot study, which showed that participation in an IBD specialty medical home, a care delivery model that is uniquely designed to provide comprehensive and well-coordinated health services, increases patients' quality of life while decreasing levels of disease activity and use of unplanned care. In fact, the pilot study demonstrated a 50 percent decline in emergency room visits and a 30 percent decline in hospitalizations among participants.
"The early successes of the pilot study are encouraging and now this multi-year PCORI study will allow us to further align the payer and provider to develop long-term benefits and applications in a variety of clinical settings," said Dr. William Shrank, chief medical officer for UPMC Insurance Services Division. "The use of technology as a key component of the study underscores the role that emerging trends will play in the future of health care."
Participants who enroll in the study will receive IBD specialty medical home care through either a team-based or tech-based approach.
The team-based approach is a personalized service design that includes gastroenterologists, behavioral health specialists, registered nurses, and health coaches who provide intensive, in-person support and resources. The tech-based approach leverages a digital platform using remote monitoring, digital behavioral interventions, and telehealth to deliver team-based care at the patient's convenience, at home and in the community, with the guidance of health coaches.
"By examining the effectiveness of a 'team vs. tech' approach, we expect that this research will provide insight on the most effective methods to provide both physical and behavioral health care to individuals with IBD and most importantly, a better quality of life for patients both now and into the future," said principal investigator for the study, Dr. Eva Szigethy, professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh and senior faculty at the UPMC Center for High-Value Health Care.
Co-investigators of the study include clinical experts from the UPMC Center for High-Value Health Care, the University of Pittsburgh, Mount Sinai Health System in New York, and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston.
This marks the fifth PCORI contract awarded to the UPMC Center for High-Value Health Care over the past five years.
About the UPMC Insurance Services Division
The UPMC Insurance Services Division is owned by UPMC, a world-renowned health care provider and insurer based in Pittsburgh, Pa. The UPMC Insurance Services Division – which includes UPMC Health Plan, WorkPartners, UPMC for Life, UPMC for You, UPMC for Kids, and Community Care Behavioral Health — offers a full range of group health insurance, Medicare, Special Needs, CHIP, Medical Assistance, behavioral health, employee assistance and workers' compensation products and services to more than 3.4 million members. For more information, visit www.upmchealthplan.com.
About the UPMC Center for High-Value Health Care
The UPMC Center for High-Value Health Care, housed within the UPMC Insurance Services Division, translates the work of the UPMC Health Plan, Community Care Behavioral Health, and the organization's additional integrated partner organizations into evidence-based practice and policy change for improving health care quality and efficiency and the overall health of the population. Many activities are conducted in UPMC's unique payer-provider laboratory and supported through grants and contracts carried out in partnership with community organizations and government agencies. UPMC is a global health enterprise and one of the nation's largest integrated health care delivery and financing systems. UPMC and its Insurance Services Division recognize and embrace the value of collaboration in achieving an equitable, high-quality, and efficient health care system that meets the needs of diverse populations. For more information, visit www.upmchighvaluehealthcare.com.
SOURCE UPMC Health Plan