GSK Launches New Website to Help Employers Lower Costs and Improve the Health of Workers
PHILADELPHIA, February 14, 2008 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) today announced the launch of the Center for Value-Based Health Management (www.CenterVBHM.com), an online resource for employers and others interested in improving the health of their workforce while lowering overall healthcare costs. The Center for Health Transformation and Health Alliance Medial Plans joined GSK in the effort to promote effective approaches to managing rising healthcare costs.
Many employers are rethinking their responses to escalating healthcare costs because they recognize that chronic diseases-such as asthma, diabetes, and heart disease-are the root problem. In fact, 45% of Americans have at least one chronic disease, and $3 out of $4 spent on healthcare goes toward treating chronic diseases. CenterVBHM was developed to assist employers, health plans, and benefit consultants to make better-informed decisions in the design and implementation of employee health management initiatives. This requires decision-makers to base their decision process on total value, rather than on cost alone.
For example, an employee who is in control of his diabetes might incur $5,000 in costs per year, but an employee who is not could cost up to $45,000 annually(i) due to such things as emergency room visits and hospital stays-not to mention lost productivity.
"The advantage of looking at total value, rather than just line item costs, is that by providing employees with incentives to lead healthier lives and helping them manage their chronic diseases, employers can reduce their total healthcare costs-and have healthier employees," said Fran Molettieri, account vice president, GSK Employer Team. "This new website will be the must- use resource for those looking to redesign their health management programs to lower costs and improve employee health."
What is Value-Based Health Management?
Value-based health management (VBHM) is a cross-disciplinary approach to managing the health of employees or other people sharing the same healthcare plan. It includes the planning, design, implementation, administration, and evaluation of health management practices that are grounded in evidence-based guidelines across the healthcare continuum. Within the VBHM model, initiatives primarily focus on innovative practices that demonstrate the greatest total value through value-based benefit design, primary prevention, risk intervention, and chronic disease management.
CenterVBHM will be an invaluable resource for sharing information on managing costs and improving health. "We need a system-wide transformation of health and healthcare in the US," said Newt Gingrich, former Speaker of the US House of Representatives and founder of the Center for Health Transformation. "Stakeholders at every level and across the spectrum of healthcare- individuals, employers, health plans, benefit consultants, patient advocates, and government leaders at both the state and federal levels-will benefit from the sharing of best practices on value-based health management to fight the epidemic of chronic diseases and rising healthcare costs."
Sickness costs more than wellness.
Value-based health management practices have demonstrated great value, including lower direct healthcare spending combined with reductions in productivity-related losses due to sick days, disability, workers' compensation, employee turnover, and presenteeism. The various VBHM practices fit well within a wide-ranging approach to managing costs and improving health.
"We believe one way to improve health is to lead by example," said Christina Barrington, Director of Pharmacy Services at Health Alliance Medical Plans. "So we started with a pilot program for diabetic employees at our parent company, Carle Clinic, to test the value of different designs," Barrington added.
"The approach of investing upfront for a long-term, healthier, and more productive workforce made sense to us," says Robert Scully, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Health Alliance. "Early data from the pilot were encouraging and we decided to launch an expanded value-based benefit for the fully-insured diabetic population starting in July of this year."
"We are excited that a resource like CenterVBHM will enable companies to learn from each other, and we are pleased to join GSK in this effort," Barrington said. "It will be an important resource for all those invested in changing the way we look at healthcare in this country.
Employers large and small, municipal and state governments, and business coalitions are all embracing VBHM. Case studies presenting the experiences of Pitney Bowes, the City of Asheville, NC, and the Diabetes Ten City Challenge participants are featured on the website.
"CenterVBHM is our newest tool for employers, health plan representatives, and benefit consultants to foster a focused conversation about how value-based health management fits within the broader healthcare discussion," said Chris Viehbacher, GSK's president of US Pharmaceuticals.
The Center for Value-Based Health Management offers a growing body of information and support tools that will enable organizations to:
-- Benchmark current health management practices. -- Learn from best-practice organizations. -- Provide the business rationale for value-based health management initiatives. In addition, visitors will find a number of tools such as: -- Podcasts-useful information about value-based benefit design, adherence, data management, benchmarking, chronic diseases, and productivity. -- Total Value, Total Return-the seven rules for optimizing employee health benefits for a healthier, more productive workforce. -- BeneFIT Design-the seven steps for implementing a value-based health management strategy-and assessing an organization's current health management practices. -- WorkScript-a program that teaches the value of medication adherence in managing chronic health conditions and reducing cost and access barriers that may further drive your healthcare costs. -- Case Studies-featuring Pitney Bowes, Diabetes Ten City Challenge and the City of Asheville. -- Newsroom-housing the latest on VBHM initiatives from around the country.
New content will be added regularly. In addition, visitors will be able to share information, becoming active participants in helping the Center develop as a valuable health management resource.
Visit The Center for Value-Based Health Management at www.CenterVBHM.com.
GlaxoSmithKline, one of the world's leading research-based pharmaceutical and healthcare companies, is committed to improving the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better, and live longer.
(i) Health Partners. Beyond Benefits. January 2006. http://www.healthpartners.com:747/media/beyondbenefits/BB0106_br.htm Last accessed 2/5/08
CONTACT: Michael McTigue of GlaxoSmithKline, +1-215-751-7709
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Posted: February 2008