I’m excited about a new relationship at work with Vital Decisions. Some of you have heard me talk about Palliative Care before. The whole area of working with patients that have an advanced illness is a hot discussion topic especially within the CMS community (see yesterday’s WSJ). But, while many consumers focus and worry about the idea of cost containment at this emotional time, Vital Decisions does a great job of using their behavioral counselors to work with patients to help them articulate their desires to their family and their physicians. They’re not counseling them on medical decisions or trying to limit care. They are simply trying to help patients to find a way to talk about this topic with their caregivers.
In some ways, it reminds me of the Engage With Grace movement to try to get families to talk about this with each other. In this case, the conversation is coordinated with our care manager and part of an overall patient-centric approach to care.
Here’s some of the press release:
inVentiv Medical Management (iMM), an inVentiv Health company and provider of best-in-class medical management services to the healthcare industry, today announced that it has formed a partnership with Vital Decisions to better serve the needs of payers, providers, and seriously ill patients nationwide. The joint offering will support patients by empowering them to be more proactive decision makers when it comes to their health, and, thereby, reduce the use of costly care that is medically inappropriate or unwanted by individuals with advanced illnesses.
Together, iMM and Vital Decisions – an Edison, New Jersey-based company that provides patient-centered behavioral counseling programs for those with advanced illnesses – will offer a unique care management and counseling program to individuals battling metastatic cancer, end-stage heart or lung disease, and progressive neurologic conditions, such as Alzheimer’s or Lou Gehrig’s disease (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis-ALS). The program is designed to encourage patients to work with their physicians and family members to make well-informed care decisions as their illnesses progress. inVentiv Medical Management case managers will provide patients with clinical advice, while Vital Decisions specialists will offer counseling support using the company’s proprietary “Living Well” program, which helps individuals with advanced illnesses communicate their quality-of-life preferences to those involved in their care.