Highmark fights chronic conditions

Highmark and Network Health are the latest insurers to launch new preventive care programs aimed at helping members with chronic conditions.

Starting mid-October, Pittsburgh, Penn.-based Highmark will provide coupons and recipes to targeted members, encouraging them toward healthier eating and lifestyle habits. More than 75,000 members will be mailed coupons for "Better-for-You" foods, like whole grain rice, in addition to blood pressure monitoring devices and vitamin supplements. Highmark also recently opened retail stores to meet members' needs as they seek insurance and launched an iPhone app so they can access healthcare information on the go.

"It is estimated that 70 percent of today's illnesses are related to lifestyle and, therefore, preventable," Steven Nelson, Highmark senior vice president of corporate marketing and consumerism, said in a statement.

In a similar move, Network Health in Massachusetts has partnered with a health management solutions provider to offer enhanced health coaching services to members with such chronic ailments as diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, congestive heart failure, asthma, as well as co-morbid behavioral health conditions. The program is free; members work with their dedicated care coach and receive guidance, support, and actionable need-specific strategies, according to Healthcare Finance News.

To learn more:
- read the Highmark press release
- read the Healthcare Finance News story