SPRINGFIELD – Today the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) announced $320 million in savings in fiscal year 2009, the third year of operations for two popular care management programs, Illinois Health Connect and Your Healthcare Plus.
“When we are able to effectively teach individuals how to manage their illnesses and coordinate with a medical home, it leads to fewer emergency room and hospital visits, which in turn reduces costs and most importantly improves the quality of life for each individual,” said HFS Director, Julie Hamos. “As Illinois and the nation move toward implementing national Healthcare reform, we intend to build on the success of Illinois Health Connect and Your Healthcare Plus and to strengthen our health information technology infrastructure, which provides the foundation for successful care management.”
The Illinois Health Connect program focuses on improving health outcomes by assuring access and coordination of services through a medical home, or primary care physician (PCP). In FY 2009 Illinois Health Connect saved the state about $150 million. Those savings were realized by increasing the utilization of primary and preventive services through an individuals’ medical home or PCP, which in turn reduces the usage of emergency rooms for routine medical care.
Your Healthcare Plus is the state’s disease management program and provides free support to adults with disabilities, individuals with frequent emergency room visits, and children and adults with other chronic ailments- such as asthma, diabetes and heart disease. Last year the program realized a savings of $169 million. Your Healthcare Plus encourages the use of a consistent medical home, promotes a stronger physician/patient relationship by supporting the physician’s plan of care and emphasizes better medication management.
The savings from the two programs have increased steadily since they were launched, with a total savings of $70 million in Fiscal Year 2007 and $180 million in FY 2008.
Continuing its efforts to enhance care management and health outcomes through medical homes, the Department recently released a request for proposals seeking two Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) to provide adults with disabilities and older adults in the Medicaid Program with the full spectrum of Medicaid services through a medical home. This pilot program, called Integrated Care, will serve approximately 40,000 individuals in suburban Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kankakee, Lake and Will Counties. Interested MCOs must submit their proposal to HFS on May 14, 2010. The program is targeted to start in the last quarter of 2010.
More than 1.7 million Illinoisans are enrolled in Illinois Health Connect, while 240,000 of those individuals were also eligible for services through Your Healthcare Plus.
For more information on Illinois Health Connect, people can visit www.hfs.illinois.gov/managedcare/ihc or call 1-877-912-1999 or TTY at 1-866-565-8577. For more information about Your Healthcare Plus, go to www.hfs.illinois.gov/dm or call 1-800-973-6792 or TTY at 1-888-317-2698.