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Learn More About Medicare Diabetes Prevention Program

July 25, 2016 04:03 pm News Staff

Family physicians know firsthand the devastating health consequences diabetes can cause because they treat so many patients who have this chronic disease.

[Physician holding sign

Therefore, FPs likely will be interested to learn that CMS is hosting a free webinar(innovation.cms.gov) on Aug. 9 from noon to 1 p.m. EDT to discuss a proposed expansion of the Medicare Diabetes Prevention Program(innovation.cms.gov) in 2018.

Registration is now open,(engage.vevent.com) and it's best to sign up soon because space is limited.

The program -- which aims to prevent the onset of diabetes in patients who've been diagnosed with prediabetes -- has been tested by CMS' Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation and has shown it can reduce Medicare spending.

A proposal to expand the diabetes prevention program was part of the 2017 proposed Medicare physician fee schedule(www.gpo.gov) and was included in the AAFP's initial summary(13 page PDF) of the lengthy proposal.

According to the proposal, CDC-recognized Medicare Diabetes Prevention Program suppliers would be permitted to submit claims for providing diabetes prevention services. It is hoped that by expanding the Diabetes Prevention Program into Medicare, the program can serve as a model for employers and insurers who may want to initiate diabetes prevention programs in their own patient populations.

CMS describes the diabetes prevention program as "a structured lifestyle intervention" that includes dietary coaching, lifestyle intervention and moderate physical activity.

The program's clinical intervention consists of 16 core sessions that deliver curriculum to patients in a classroom setting. The sessions highlight

  • implementing long-term dietary change,
  • increasing physical activity and
  • executing behavior-change strategies for weight control.

The initial 16 sessions are followed up with monthly group meetings to help ensure patient success in meeting goals; the primary intervention goal is an average weight loss of 5 percent among participants.

Related AAFP News Coverage
Proposed Medicare Fee Schedule Emphasizes Primary Care's Value
AAFP Summarizes Elements Critical to Family Physicians

(7/18/2016)

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