BCBS of Tennessee uses data, outreach to close preventive care gaps

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee is using health data to identify preventative care gaps among its members, coupled with outreach teams that offer easily accessible routine screenings and tests, according to an op-ed in The Tennessean.

Andrea Willis, chief medical officer at BCBST, says members are often unaware they’ve missed a routine test or screening, such as a colonoscopy, so the insurer has devised a plan to offer periodic reminders in order to prevent future complications.

Using claims data, BCBST developed a simple, color-coded “member scorecard” that identifies gaps in preventative care. Last year, the scorecard prompted members to get 20 percent of the delayed screenings identified by the insurer. Primary care physicians point to similar data sets to discuss the importance of preventative screening with patients.  

BCBST also uses outreach teams throughout the state to offer tests such as breast cancer screenings, bone density tests, and blood pressure readings. Additionally, the insurer is toying with a new medical home model that “delivers deeply integrated primary care,” while partnering with physicians to develop new value-based payment models.

Insurers are placing more emphasis on preventative care as studies show that value-based payment models can improve preventative care, and personalized preventative care can save on long term costs.

- read The Tennessean op-ed