CERRITOS, Calif.--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--According to a national survey conducted by Harris Poll released today, 85 percent of seniors surveyed noted they have been diagnosed with a serious health condition,1 and 64 percent have seen three or more health care providers over the past year for their care. However, 34 percent reported a family member coordinates their medical care among all of the health care providers they see, and 35 percent say no one does, highlighting a significant gap in care due to the multitude and complexity of chronic conditions affecting aging seniors.
“Navigating the health care system is inherently challenging and is even more perplexing for seniors, as many suffer from chronic diseases like heart disease, hypertension and diabetes, and are at high risk for complications”
Furthermore, the survey of more than 1,000 seniors found that while a majority (61 percent) are asked during all or most appointments if they understand their treatment plans, less than half (43 percent) are asked about the treatments and medications they have been prescribed by other doctors. And in the critical first few months following a hospital stay, nearly 2 in 3 seniors who have ever been hospitalized (63 percent) report that no one helped coordinate their care.
“Navigating the health care system is inherently challenging and is even more perplexing for seniors, as many suffer from chronic diseases like heart disease, hypertension and diabetes, and are at high risk for complications,” said Dr. Sachin H. Jain, president of CareMore. “It’s important that we engage patients by providing access to a comprehensive health care team and services, to enable access to optimal care and coordination. Successful care delivery models of the future will harness the power of teamwork to meet the medical, psychological, social and personal health needs of the patients they serve.”
Coordinating care across multiple providers who treat a single patient is a key strategy for ensuring positive clinical outcomes, while also reducing costs. As the health care system continues to evolve toward coordinated care models, there is also an increasing imperative to offer seniors programs to help address needs beyond medical care – and the survey shows seniors are interested.
The survey found that 36 percent of seniors say they want more opportunities to engage with people in their community. Almost one in three seniors (32 percent) say it is just as important for health care providers to offer transportation to medical appointments as it is to monitor blood pressure. And, more than a quarter (28 percent) want their health care provider to offer access to a gym or group fitness classes.
Other key survey findings include:
- Almost all seniors (95 percent) are satisfied with the quality of care they receive from their health care provider.
- A slight majority of seniors (56 percent) would like their health care provider to offer specific programs to help manage their health (from a list that was provided). Those who report their health being fair or poor are 34 percent more likely to want these programs than seniors in good or excellent health (71 percent vs. 47 percent).
- More than half of seniors (51 percent) say it is at least somewhat important to receive regular calls from their health care providers’ office regarding follow up to their care plans.
The survey, titled “More Than Medicine: A Survey of Seniors by CareMore,” was conducted by telephone in the U.S. by Harris Poll on behalf of CareMore between September 26 and October 13, 2016 and is weighted to be nationally representative. The research was conducted among 1,005 U.S. adults aged 65+ who have seen a health care provider for a medical appointment (“seniors”). For more information about the survey findings (including weighting variables), please go to: www.caremorehealthsystem.com/senior-survey
1 Among the serious health conditions seniors reported being diagnosed with are high blood pressure/hypertension (58 percent), high cholesterol (46 percent) or type 2 diabetes (25 percent), among others.
CareMore is a physician-founded, physician-led care delivery system and health plan that harnesses the power of teamwork to treat the whole person. Through a focus on prevention and highly coordinated care, its clinical model and designed-for-purpose approach to managing chronic disease proactively addresses the medical, social and personal health needs of its patients, resulting in clinical outcomes above the national average and ultimately, healthier people and communities. Over the past seven years, the CareMore Care Centers have expanded from one state to seven. And today, the CareMore delivery system provides care for enrollees in Medicare Advantage and Medicaid health plans in California, Nevada, Arizona, Virginia, Tennessee, Iowa and Georgia. CareMore also is participating in a dual demonstration project in parts of Los Angeles County in conjunction with state and federal regulators to coordinate care for people eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid. For more information about CareMore, go to www.caremorehealthsystem.com.