Cigna hits 100 collaborative care arrangements milestone; Better control of blood cell drugs can save big money;

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> Motivational interviewing can ensure wellness programs succeed, according to Johns Hopkins-led research. The strategy uses a patient-centered counseling approach to motivate people to change behaviors by helping people implement realistic plans for change when they are ready. Announcement

> Cigna joined the accountable care organization movement in 2008, and with 11 new arrangements starting this month, the insurer now has 100 collaborative care arrangements with large physician groups. Announcement

> Aetna is using a new gene expression blood test as part of a strategy to promote more accurate and less invasive tests and treatments for patients and lower-cost alternatives for payers, reported Healthcare Payer News. Article

Health Finance News

> Curbing the use of drugs that stimulate blood cell production can significantly reduce costs at the hospital level, Anesthesiology News reported. Article

> While for-profit hospital chains fight reimbursement cuts tied to the Affordable Care Act and high levels of uncompensated care in states that do not expand Medicaid eligibility, delivery of care at a less complex level could wind up being their salvation, The Motley Fool reported. Article

And Finally... Obama horsing around in Denver. Article