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May 11, 2009

State Announces Success of Teaching Medicaid Beneficiaries Care Management
State’s Disease Management Program saves money by helping people manage chronic illnesses

SPRINGFIELD – Today Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) Director Barry S. Maram announced that during the second year of the state’s disease management program, Your Healthcare Plus, the state achieved $104 million in savings during fiscal year 2008 – triple the savings achieved during the previous fiscal year. This reflects the savings after paying for the costs of the program.  In addition to saving the state money, the program is providing care coordination support to over 220,000 people enrolled in Medicaid.

“Your Healthcare Plus is not just saving money; it is helping people with chronic illnesses live fuller lives,” said Director Maram.  “People are staying out of hospitals and emergency rooms because they are learning how to manage their diseases and stay healthy.  It is important that we continue helping people avoid costly hospital stays if we want to continue to cut down on healthcare costs.”

Your Healthcare Plus provides comprehensive support to adults with disabilities, individuals with frequent emergency room visits, and children and adults with persistent asthma.  Registered nurses and other healthcare professionals help Your Healthcare Plus beneficiaries suffering from any chronic health condition learn new ways to manage their health.  The program encourages the use of a consistent medical home for beneficiaries and promotes a stronger physician/patient relationship by supporting the physician’s plan of care.

Aside from saving money, Your Healthcare Plus decreased unnecessary hospitalizations and emergency room visits.  In addition, key clinical measures including improved medication management and appropriate laboratory testing to monitor patients’ conditions are showing improvement. 

For more information about Your Healthcare Plus, one the largest and most comprehensive disease management programs in the country, people can visit www.hfs.illinois.gov/dm.  People seeking help in managing their ongoing health problems can also call 1-800-973-6792 for more details about this free program.


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