Transforming the Consumer Health Care Experience

How our Integrated Model Addresses Key Patient Challenges

CVS Health heart shape icon
January 9, 2019
Former President and Chief Executive Officer, CVS Health

Our goal in combining CVS Health and Aetna is to address the challenges of today’s health care system and transform the experience by putting consumers at the center of care, beginning with the creation of a new front door to health care. The current system is complex, fragmented and based on an episodic, fee-for-service model that is often wasteful. This leads to higher costs – the U.S. spends $3.5 trillion on health care and that is rising. But the money spent does not always lead to better outcomes. This is unsustainable and the entire system needs to be transformed. We can and must do better.

CVS Health intends to push the system toward less expensive, more convenient, high-quality care.

This starts with engaging the consumer in their individual health care journey. We will use our consumer-centric assets to introduce the appropriate programs and services to help them achieve their health goals, thus improving health outcomes and lowering costs.

Our efforts will be guided by our three strategic imperatives:

Be Local. We have more consumer touchpoints than any other health care company and this enables us to reach each patient when, where, and how they need us. Today, one-in-three Americans engages with CVS Health – we are part of their normal, everyday routines, which means we simply have to build our programs and services into their existing daily lives.

Make Health Care Simpler. We will empower patients to more effectively navigate the system and become more informed health care decision-makers by providing more convenient access to the information, resources and services they need.

Improve Health. Helping people on their path to better health has been a cornerstone of our purpose at CVS Health and by aligning the capabilities of Aetna with our consumer-centric assets we will be able to more effectively deliver on this goal.

Five Initial Areas of Focus

The five initial areas we will focus on will include improved care management for both common and complex chronic conditions, preventing avoidable hospital re-admissions, site-of-care management and optimizing primary care:

Number 1

Common Chronic Disease Management
Gap closure, adherence and assistance with care management plans to improve health outcomes for chronic patients.

Number 2

Readmission Prevention
Integrate CVS and Aetna clinical programs with our expansive community presence to support patients during and after discharge.

Number 3

Site of Care Management
Increase utilization lower-cost sites of care, including home infusion, where appropriate and prevent unnecessary ER visits.

Number 4

Optimize Primary Care
Expand scope of MinuteClinic services to help with early identification and management of chronic disease.

Number 5

Complex Chronic Disease Initiatives
New oncology product, cardiovascular disease interventions and chronic kidney disease management.

The opportunity is massive. As a nation, we spend more than $2 trillion annually – 86 percent of total medical spending – on treating patients with chronic conditions.CMS, National Health Expenditures (figures as of 1/8/2018). Total medical spending equals health consumption expenditures minus retail sales of medical products, including prescriptions, government administration, net cost of health insurance and government public health activities.“Multiple Chronic Conditions Chartbook,” Jessie Gerteis et al., AHRQ, 2014. Numerous studies estimate that up to a quarter of that spend, or $500 billion, is avoidable.Targeting High Cost Patients and their Needs,” Jha, January 2016. Addressing just five to 10 percent of that could lead to savings of tens of billions of dollars.

We aim to help improve the management of five common chronic conditions – diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, asthma and behavioral health. We will build on our near-term medical cost savings, by utilizing our rich clinical data and community assets, and through tighter integration of pharmacy and medical claims. As part of a new pilot program launched in the fourth quarter of last year, we will provide adherence outreach and counseling to Aetna plan members who are at high risk for adverse health events. This quarter, we will be launching another pilot to provide specialized, enhanced services to support Aetna members with congestive heart failure. Many of the pilots will include select other clients for a broader population base.

The next target is reducing avoidable hospital re-admissions by utilizing Aetna’s clinical programs to identify patients at the point of discharge and engaging them though our retail assets to better support them. In the first quarter of this year, we plan to launch a pilot in which we will schedule MinuteClinic follow-ups within 14 days post-discharge when the patient is unable to see a provider. We will also engage patients after discharge, provide them strategies for care management and help mitigate risks of non-adherence, side effects and gaps in care.

Better Care, Open Source Model

While some of the pilot programs are focused on Aetna members, we intend to expand the health and wellness services we offer to plan members of all our health care partners through an open source platform.

We will also aim to increase the use of lower-cost sites of care, including home infusion, when appropriate. Research has shown that at-home and other alternative sites of care can be safer for patients and lower costs for payors. By helping identify frequent users of the emergency room (ER) and educating them on available care options we can help reduce unnecessary ER visits, further lowering costs.

We intend to expand the health and wellness services we offer, to plan members of all our health care partners through an open source platform.

To help with early identification and ongoing management of chronic diseases, we will expand the scope of services available at MinuteClinic, thus optimizing and extending primary care.

We are also developing a series of comprehensive programs to better manage complex chronic diseases. Our aim is to target conditions such as kidney disease where the goal is reducing hospitalizations and delaying the progression of the disease, and oncology where the objective is to align provider incentives to focus on quality and outcomes, while enhancing patient support. These solutions will be accessible through a broad range of channels – from local community-based assets, to virtual and digital solutions – all coordinated across the member and the consumer journey.

Concept Stores to Simplify the Patient Journey

A key element of simplifying the patient journey is the opening of a series of health care concept stores which will serve as a testing ground for a new retail engagement model. The new stores will provide health care services in a more convenient, accessible, and customer-focused manner. We will pilot new programs and service offerings, identify the solutions that are the most effective and scalable, and roll them out more broadly.

The new store will feature new health and wellness categories in the front store as we optimize our merchandising to focus on “Best Of” category assortments. It will also offer an expanded suite of health care services including a Care Concierge, and other health and wellness support. In our MinuteClinic locations, we will introduce new clinical services such as enhanced screenings for chronic disease and in-clinic phlebotomy. And our pharmacy staff will use our data and analytics capabilities to provide personalized prescription support and actionable information at key points in care to help improve patient outcomes.

Want to learn more about how our company will help transform health care? Ask Us
January 9, 2019
Former President and Chief Executive Officer, CVS Health

Explore Programs

Member Care and Support

Targeted Condition Management to Help Improve Outcomes.

Health Engagement Engine

This proprietary technology platform powers our integrated model, transforming data into actionable interventions for better outcomes.

Care Management

Helping clients improve outcomes and quality while lowering costs.

This page contains trademarks or registered trademarks of CVS Pharmacy, Inc. and/or one of its affiliates.

CVS Health uses and shares data as allowed by applicable law, and by our agreements and our information firewall.