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How HealthHUB Aims to Make the Existing Health Care System That Much Better
The recent announcement that we will open up to 1,500 HealthHUB locations in CVS Pharmacy stores by 2021 is another step toward meeting our commitment to improve health care and transform the consumer experience. By making high-quality care easily accessible through our convenient locations, and treating people as informed, empowered, and engaged consumers, we can ensure they get the cost-effective care they need.
HealthHUB will provide “complementary care” that fits into the existing health care system to make it that much better.
HealthHUB locations were designed with key features to make this possible: convenient community orientation with nurse practitioners and pharmacists practicing at the top of their license and providing evidence-based care. Many locations will also have physician assistants and licensed vocational nurses on staff. HealthHUB locations will focus both on acute care for common medical problems, as well as ongoing care for chronic disease to help make the existing health care system that much better. To do so requires that we integrate the care we offer with what the patient's other providers, doctors and nurses offer, as well as efforts by their health insurers or accountable care organization. The care we provide should not duplicate, or conflict with, that offered by other caregivers, but complement it. This principle has been paramount in the design of our HealthHUB locations.
HealthHUB builds on two major efforts from the last several years:
Expanded MinuteClinic Services
MinuteClinic has proven to generate significant engagement and improve health outcomes through easily accessible locations, highly valued practitioners, digital communication tools, and point-of-care testing.* HealthHUB expands the range of services MinuteClinic offers, providing care for a larger variety of acute illnesses, as well as continuity of care for certain common chronic diseases like hypertension, hyperlipidemia, asthma and diabetes, which often go undiagnosed and/or undertreated. HealthHUB locations have additional exam rooms, and a team of nurse practitioners – many also include physician assistants – who can offer a variety of primary care services, in partnership with collaborating physicians.
Pharmacists at the Top of Their License
We are also expanding the role of our pharmacists in providing treatment information to patients to enable them to practice at the top of their pharmacy license. We are proud of our pharmacy team’s expertise in helping with medication problems, side effects and interactions, as well as adherence counseling. Now, algorithmic analysis of health data from pharmacy and medical claims enables us to generate new insights for pharmacists, expanding the range of issues they can discuss. Many HealthHUB locations provide private rooms for pharmacy consultation. Pharmacists can also reach out to patients with chronic diseases to provide advice and information.
The HealthHUB layout is designed to support health, wellness, and engagement with 20% of the space dedicated to health services.
Designed for Integrated Health Care
The HealthHUB layout is designed to support health, wellness, and engagement with a significant percentage of the store space dedicated to health services. It offers a larger selection of durable medical equipment, a care concierge to provide information, and space for health classes on issues like diabetes prevention and wellness.** Many locations will also provide nutritional counseling with a dietitian.
However, it is also critical that the locations integrate into the health care system — they would not fulfill their promise if they were isolated from the rest of the health care system. As the shortage of primary care doctors continues and providers move away from fee-for-service reimbursement to more value-based models, they will need support to help manage primary care for common chronic diseases. HealthHUB locations are well placed to collaborate with them, offering convenient care and engaging with patients in a virtual team.
HealthHUB locations are well placed to collaborate with providers and engage with patients in a virtual team.
Using interoperable electronic health records systems, we can share information about the treatment we provide to patients with other providers involved in the patient’s care. We are also developing relationships with accountable care organizations so that we can seamlessly share treatment information and support care coordination for individuals with chronic disease. We can help fill gaps in the parts of primary care that today are sometimes lacking: education, prevention, and encouragement of wellness.
Enabling a Shared Goal through an Open Model
Most insurers have the same goals for their beneficiaries: high-quality preventive care for their chronic disease that can help avoid long-term complications and the costs associated with it. Many are expanding home outreach and care management programs to help supplement care provided by physician offices. Our Aetna team continually designs new insights and capabilities for analyzing patient care data and identifying specific interventions, which will be integrated into the care provided to their members at the HealthHUB locations.
These capabilities are not only available to Aetna members. We also plan to provide them to other insurers who are interested, through an open platform model. Through our pharmacy benefit management company, CVS Caremark, we have relationships with more than 200 insurers, and we are seeking to expand this list.
Optimizing prescription therapy is key to improving outcomes for chronic conditions that drive a majority of health care spend.
Our success in helping people on the path to better health depends on how well we engage members and encourage them to take the right steps.
*CVS Health Internal Analysis, 2019.
**Medical equipment and supplies purchased without a prescription from the Home Health Care section of our website or in our store are not covered by Medicare. If a claim is submitted to Medicare for those items, Medicare will not reimburse for the purchase price. Other insurers’ policies may vary and plan materials should be reviewed or contact insurer prior to purchase if items are to be submitted for reimbursement.
Image source: Licensed from Getty Images, 2019.
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