HPN Medicaid Works with Mom’s Meals® to Improve Health Outcomes for Diabetic Members
Diabetes was the eighth leading cause of death in the United States in 2020. A recent pilot program in Nevada is showing promise of making an impact on this number for Nevada.
We recently had the opportunity to learn more about this program from Kelly Simonson, CEO of Health Plan of Nevada Medicaid Program and Catherine Macpherson, Senior Vice President of Healthcare Strategy and Development and Chief Nutrition Officer of Mom’s Meals.
Why are Health Plan of Nevada (HPN) and Mom’s Meals® teaming up?
Kelly: Over 37 million Americans have diabetes, with 281,000 of those diagnosed residing in Nevada. With approximately 12% of the state’s population diagnosed with the disease, HPN Medicaid partnered with Mom’s Meals to create a program to support diabetes management by better engaging its members as well as addressing social determinants of health like food insecurity.
Catherine: Not having access to nutritious, diabetes-friendly meals further complicates diabetes management. Mom’s Meals’ mission is to improve life through better nutrition at home. Partnering with HPN was a no-brainer. Through this program, we could help those diagnosed with the disease in reducing their hemoglobin A1c levels (a measure of average blood sugar control over the past three months) by almost 2 percentage points, and ultimately help reduce hospitalizations and save on healthcare costs.
Tell us about the pilot program.
Kelly: In September 2020, HPN launched the pilot program in partnership with Mom’s Meals, focusing on Medicaid members with Type 2 diabetes who had an A1c greater than 9. Members entering the program had an average A1c of 10.86. The goal of the pilot program was to support eligible HPN Medicaid members with uncontrolled Type 2 diabetes through educational counseling, disease management program engagement, condition self-management and reduce A1c levels by making healthy and nutritious meal options readily accessible
The 12-week pilot program included four weeks of HPN disease management program participation, weekly contact with a nurse, and two daily meals from Mom’s Meals for eight weeks. Overall, through this partnership we aimed to ease the burden of living with a Type 2 diabetes diagnosis on more than one front.
How were the pilot results successful?
Catherine: We have found that, over the two-year program, the members with Type 2 diabetes who completed the Mom’s Meals pilot program saw a decrease in their A1c of 1.9 points or greater. Additionally, the pilot resulted in more frequent touchpoints with nurses, improved medication adherence, and demonstrated a 32% reduction in cost of care and 82% reduction in acute patient costs.
Why is the success important?
Catherine: These results tell us that the pairing of HPN counseling and the convenience of the refrigerated home delivered meals from Mom’s Meals, helped members to better control their diabetes. By providing access to nutritious, diabetes-friendly meals along with access to a disease management program and nurse support, HPN and Mom’s Meals were able to help these members improve their overall health.
What’s next for the program?
Kelly: Expanding the program to include Type 1 diabetes members was the next logical step. Following the success of the program for HPN Type 2 diabetes Medicaid members, we saw first-hand how providing the Mom’s Meals resources to members went beyond lowering A1c levels – including improved mental health, self-confidence and portion control.