healthylifestyle

OneCare Launches Innovative Adherence Management System

MagnaCare Signs On as First Major Healthcare Customer
MARIETTA, GA – OneCare’s groundbreaking new system for medical case management is being rolled out to chronically ill patients by MagnaCare, a Brighton Health Plan Solutions business with more than 500,000 covered lives in the Northeast.

  • OneCare, based in metro Atlanta, combines cutting-edge technology with social media, behavioral change methods and family-based communication strategies to revolutionize case management for the chronically ill. The cloud-based, HIPAA-compliant OneCare system:
  • Provides current and accurate information on chronically ill and high claims risk members without relying on patient self-recording.
  • Utilizes social media and mobile apps to involve family members in day-to-day case management.
  • Creates immediate, positive reinforcements for behavior change by setting up cloud-based reporting solutions with high-quality wireless devices such as weight scales, blood pressure cuffs, blood glucose monitors, and more, resulting in improved care plan adherence.
  • Dispatches an implementation manager to help patients and family members set up and use the program.
  • Automatically delivers reminders to patients to take readings and medications.
  • Automatically monitors compliance with reminders and sends alerts to the patient’s care team, including family members, when reminders are not followed and when adverse readings are transmitted. This capability helps to prevent the avoidable episodes of care.
  • Allows integration with third-party applications, consumer health trackers and medical devices, reducing costs and easing implementation.

The OneCare platform includes clinical content that encompasses education based on clinical practice guidelines, daily general and disease specific assessment questions, and the ability to track vital signs and health indicators such as sleep quality, mood and exercise. By combining these elements of education and health information that are shared across the care team of family members, caregivers, patients/clients and healthcare professionals, it creates a continuum of informed and activated users all contributing to optimal patient care.

More than 60% of all healthcare costs result from preventable causes like poor patient adherence with their doctor’s care plans. “OneCare is an adherence management platform. Our goal is to help patients adhere to their physician’s care plan. We want the best results for people whose health is at risk with a chronic illness,” said Gary Austin, founder and CEO of OneCare. “Greater adherence means lower health risk and financial risk, lowering the costs to the health plan and creating a healthier member. OneCare’s platform is a breakthrough. It’s the health care system that patients, families and clinicians can all use to connect, collaborate, and manage care together.”

Aubrey Daniels International, a management consultancy that developed OneCare’s customized behavioral psychology programs, wrote, “OneCare combines the best in IT with behavioral techniques that have been proven effective for over 80 years and in our practice for over 40 years. The OneCare IT platform requires very little effort for the patient and family to track and it provides positive, immediate, certain reinforcement through the connected family members, resulting in improved behaviors necessary to manage their health.”

EvaluaideSM, Presented by MagnaCare, a Brighton Health Plan Solutions business.
OneCare’s newest client is MagnaCare’s population health platform EvaluaideSM. More than 500,000 people enjoy health care coverage from MagnaCare through group health plans offered by commercial employers and Taft-Hartley funds. With the utilization of EvaluaideSM, they have identified the people with chronic illnesses and high claims risk and offered them unique and personalized services. EvaluaideSM is implementing the OneCare system for their custom participant portal, which is a service that will powerfully elevate their case management and risk management capabilities. Melissa Sirola, director of EvaluaideSM, RN, MSN, MBA, MagnaCare, says, “The EvaluaideSM Participant Portal, powered by OneCare, offers a consistent clinical approach for members to follow. It provides chronic health condition-specific education, and creates proactive reminders via text, email and phone that prompt patient engagement and adherence to the care plan. By involving family members and friends in this care team notification process, members benefit from timely behavior changes that positively impact their healthcare. The platform is a powerful enhancement to the EvaluaideSM program”

OneCare met the needs of EvaluaideSM, which included the following:

• HIPAA Compliance
• Branding Capabilities
• Multiple Languages
• Ease of Use by Case Managers and Participants
• Reporting
• Dashboard for Nurse Management
• Educational Materials
• Clinical Pathways
• Flexibility
• Growth Potential
• Care Team Concept
• Push Notification Reminders versus Daily Self Log In
• Multiple Functionality

Implementation Comments from EvaluaideSM Case Managers and Nurses Regarding OneCare
• We are really excited about this project and the platform is exceptional.
• The platform is amazing and the demonstration was great.
• The platform is exceptional. It gets better each time I use it.
• Thanks to your programming/IT team for your brilliance and your flexibility.
• We are building a superior product at MagnaCare and I am proud to be a part of the process.
• You have an extraordinary group of people.

While the patient is the primary beneficiary, the OneCare system also benefits multiple stakeholders in healthcare services, as follows:

Case management companies that utilize OneCare will have a competitive advantage that will increase compliance rates, reduce claim risk and improve the company’s value to the TPA, employer health plan, reinsurance underwriter and benefit consultant.

TPAs will be able to offer a valuable service that sets them apart from their competition by demonstrating superior case management capability.
Reinsurance underwriters will have better information to assess risk, including compliance rates in the early stages and claim history in later years.
Employer health plans will have better information to forecast future costs, and will know their members are receiving a service that will help them improve their health and hopefully return to work.

Benefit consultants can provide clients with better cost and forecasting information.
Healthcare providers will have patients who adhere to the care plans they prescribe more consistently and are supported by a team of connected family members.
Family caregivers can coordinate care with less time, effort, worry and stress, as OneCare automates and simplifies caregiving tasks.

Michael Remeika, president of Creative Risk Underwriters, LLC, said, “As a stop loss underwriter, our desire is for groups to proactively manage chronic conditions within their plans. Non-compliance with a treatment plan leads to acute issues that are costly, both to the plan and to the patient’s well being. The OneCare program addresses the issue of non-compliance, which in turn will reduce the high cost of acute situations.”

For more information, contact:
Gary Austin, CEO
OneCare LLC
(404) 405-7665
gary.austin@onecare.me

Your Every Day Health Choices

Guest Blog Post written for OneCare by Amanda Flowers of BlueStore South Charlotte


How Everyday Health Choices Make a Big Deal in the Long Run

Making healthy choices everyday can really make a huge difference, both in the short term and the long term. Healthy daily habits can make you feel better and improve the quality of life whether you have a chronic condition or are simply trying to prevent health conditions from developing. Most people understand the basics regarding what constitutes healthy habits, but don’t understand how those choices affect the body. The following are a few ways that healthy habits impact you in the long run.

Moving Your Body

Daily exercise improves your mood, boosts your energy, and helps you control your weight, but it also lowers your risks of developing a plethora of chronic conditions. No matter what your weight, exercise helps to reduce bad cholesterol levels and increase good cholesterol levels. This keeps the blood flowing through the body, preventing conditions like high blood pressure and heart disease. The weight control helps to prevent diabetes, metabolic issues, and leg problems that can eventually inhibit independence.

Avoiding Unhealthy Habits

Smoking and drinking to excess are two of the most detrimental habits for your health. Both of these habits increase the risks of heart disease, stroke, and cancers. Smoking introduces carbon monoxide into your blood stream and changes the way that your body handles cholesterol. Drinking causes the pancreas to produce toxic substances and puts stress on the liver. Since both drinking and smoking introduce toxins into the body, the immune system is weakened and cannot fight off infections as well.

Eating with Purpose

We all know that diet affects health, but too often the focus is on what not to eat. Focusing on eating more fruits and vegetables and drinking more water instead of eating or drinking less of anything may help you to feel less deprived and more excited about the endeavor. Look up fun recipes, infuse waters with tasty fruits, and plan your meals. When you are full and you know where your next meal is coming from, you will be less likely to resort to unhealthy foods.

Taking Care of Hygiene

Brushing and flossing, bathing regularly, keeping your nails trimmed, moisturizing your skin – all of these things are important for your health. Keeping your mouth and body clean can limit the number of bacteria and viruses that you are exposed to, helping you to avoid illness and infection. Keeping your skin moist and your nails trimmed can help keep your largest barrier against disease and infection intact and functioning properly.

Attending Regular Check-Ups

Attending regular check-ups for health can seem like a nuisance when nothing is wrong but can be instrumental in spotting possible issues before they cause conditions or when diseases are in early stages. Health insurance plans now cover most preventative maintenance, including check-ups, so you may be able to attend with no out of pocket cost to you. If you do have health conditions, attending regular check-ups can help you keep track of your health and prevent the condition from worsening.

Making the small healthy choices every day can go a long way towards helping you to live a long, healthy life.

 

OneCare Integrates with Walgreens – Wins App Challenge!

Around the end of October, OneCare developer David Brelloch stumbled upon a competition listed on Challenge Post by Walgreens titled, “Balance Rewards App Challenge.” He has previously completed other competitions through this site (if you aren’t familiar with Challenge Post, click here) and decided to look into the details thinking OneCare’s platform may be a good entry.

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Click here for the official Walgreens Balance Rewards App Challenge post.

Walgreens’ API was giving third party apps permission to connect with their existing services in order to share individual health and wellness information such as steps walked, running activities, weight tracking, etc. In doing so, these connected users would earn Balance Rewards Points that equate to Walgreens’ discounts.  (more…)

Is hitting Snooze affecting your weight?

We all do it. We all know it is good for us.
And the majority of us wish we got more of it.

I’m talking about SLEEP.

Countless studies have shown that getting a good night’s rest can improve mood and stress level, but did you know sleep loss affects your metabolism? Beth Malow, chief of Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Division of Sleep, states, “There are many studies linking not getting enough sleep with diabetes and obesity.”

Seven out of every ten adults in the United States reported daily stress or anxiety that interferes with their lives. This 2007 study by the Anxiety Disorders Association of America, which aimed to examine the effects of stress on sleep, claimed all seven of those individuals also said they have trouble sleeping… well, it is no wonder we are seeing an increase in numbers of diabetic and obese individuals today!
With the announcement of Withings’ new Aura sleep tracking device, the company simultaneously released the results of a study on the habits of waking up. Including data about what we use to wake up and the sounds we prefer to wake up to, the study also said an astonishing 42% of Americans set an alarm earlier than they plan on getting up so they can stay in bed an additional 5-10 minutes.

And what about that dreadful snooze button? Withings reported 57% of people snooze their alarm clock at least once, with over 28% snoozing two or more times! So why is this important?

“Constantly varying the time [you go to bed or you wake up] can lead to ‘social jet lag’ and can make you feel like you’ve just traveled across multiple time zones.” – Brandy Roane, a behavioral sleep specialist with the University of North Texas Health Science Center

For those of you who’ve suffered from jet lag, you know it’s not any fun, sometimes affecting your productivity for days.

The increasingly popularity of health tracking devices and the concept of the ‘quantified self’ has also led to a surge of sleep trackers being developed. But will they really help you manage your sleep?

It depends.

Like with any data-collecting device, it is important to understand how to use that data. If you simply track your sleep without noticing the trends, then you’re not going to be successful at improving your overall sleep quality or how rested you feel the next day. Roane mentions sleep trackers not taking into account other factors such as ambient light levels or outside noise. While this is true for some fitness trackers that include sleep capabilities, there are several devices now on the market that are solely sleep trackers that do consider these factors.

The same US Health News article, ‘How to Make the Most Out of Your Sleep Tracker,’ includes several helpful tips for putting the data to good use. For instance, even though your tracker may have a tendency to exaggerate the number of times you wake up during the night, it is important to correlate those restless nights with that extra cup of afternoon coffee you keep telling yourself you shouldn’t drink!

In conclusion, it is important to understand what you are interested in learning about, and from there to pick the best method of data collection for you. If you’d like more information about the consequences of insufficient sleep, Harvard Medical School’s Division of Sleep has a great website devoted to its importance.

Although the devices available today for at-home sleep tracking may not be perfect, learning about your sleep habits and using that knowledge to make positive adjustments in your routine (or lack-there-of), could be an easy way to improve your overall health… something we should all be striving to do!

The comparison table below is in no way an exhaustive list of all available devices or sleep-tracking features, so make sure to fully research devices if you’re planning to buy one!

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P.S. Did you know our OneCare Platform can incorporate sleep data as well?! Quickly view all of your important health information in a single personalized dashboard!

Bringing mHealth & EHR to Long-Term Care

A report on Long-Term Care by the U.S. Commission in 2013 stated that the number of people in the United States dependent on long-term care is predicted to increase from 12 to 27 million by 2050. This large increase in patient numbers will place a heavy burden on long-term care providers who will be tasked with keeping track of the growing patient population.

LongTermCare Although technology is becoming more widely accepted in the medical field, only 17% of U.S. assisted-living and residential care communities are using electronic health records (EHRs) according to a data brief released by the National Center for Health Statistics in September of 2013. This presents a huge market for long-term care focused EHR, telemedicine and mHealth EHR developments.

CareMinders Home Care of Buckhead is one long-term care provider ready to adopt such technology to improve their existing services.

CareMinders Home Care of Buckhead

CareMinders of Buckhead is a medical and non-medical home care company that works to professionally and compassionately help elders stay independent.  As one of only 8% of home care companies nationally that have been awarded The Joint Commission Accreditation, CM of Buckhead is committed to the highest quality of care available which fosters peace of mind among all family members.  Through a highly trained and experienced staff led by a Director of Nursing with more than 39 years of caregiving and case management experience, the care provided to families is unsurpassed.

OneCare has recently partnered with CareMinders Home Care of Buckhead to provide the opportunity for both individuals and their families to be even more engaged in the positive outcomes of their health.

OneCare‘s technology was developed to ease the burden that chronic illness places on an individual and their family members. By making it easy to compile, view and even track multiple health-related values such as blood pressure and glucose, people begin to get a better idea of their overall health picture. In addition to a centralized dashboard, the OneCare platform allows users to invite other people to have access to any or all of their information, including their doctors.

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Within the system itself, a user has the ability to set specific goals, schedule tasks and even initiate email, text or phone call notifications for those tasks. For example, an individual with hypertension could be instructed by their doctor to record their blood pressure twice a day for two weeks. The person can schedule this task within their OneCare account, notify themselves that a task is due soon, notify a family member if they failed to take the reading, and even notify a care provider if a value is recorded as abnormally high or low.

In addition, the platform has integrated many devices to simplify the process even further. Activity trackers from companies including Fitbit and Withings are directly linked, allowing data to be directly synced with the OneCare system. Other devices include wireless glucometers, blood pressure monitors, weight scales and even pulse oximeters.

CareMinders Home Care of Buckhead has recently developed working relationships with several Independent Living Facilities where they will house on-site offices.

The idea is to offer residents a program that includes the benefits of nursing services through use of OneCare’s Platform.

Proposed Plan Offerings:

  1. Initial setup
    • Create OneCare account
    • Risk assessment
    • Fill out all health data
    • Connect family members to OneCare account
    • Setup any purchased devices
    • Enroll into any selected programs
  2. Data entry (appointments, changes in diagnoses, medication changes, etc)
  3. Care Plan Activities
    • Education
    • Welness Programs
    • Medication Management
    • Fall Prevention Strategies
    • Setup any purchased devices
  4. Progress updates and feedback
  5. Use of an on-site clinic monitoring station (for BP, weight, etc)

Plan Benefits:

  1. Daily monitoring for peace of mind
  2. Weekly or daily contact to prevent social isolation
  3. Motivation and support for a healthy lifestyle
  4. Professional oversight for disease states like hypertension, diabetes, CHF and Alzheimer’s
  5. Keep family in the loop and fully engaged
  6. Keep medical team apprised of any changes or concerning medical readings
  7. Real-time intervention when necessary

The first plans will be offered August 1, 2014 in conjunction with the opening of a brand new independent living facility in the Atlanta area. Agreements for offering the joint plan in additional communities are already being developed. Since this is one of the first offerings of its kind, there is a huge potential for growth as the adaption of technology is just beginning to enter the long-term care industry.

Both OneCare and CareMinders Home Care of Buckhead are excited about the potential the relationship provides for the full continuum of home care and oversight so that loved ones are able to enjoy independence for even longer.