Lower Medical Claims Costs Linked to Payer's Dental Program
I recently spoke with Mary Lee Conicella, DMD, the chief dental officer at Aetna, about the DMI program, its place in the healthcare industry, and the program challenges.
Mary Lee Conicella, DMD
HLM: What's the relationship between periodontal disease and chronic disease?
Conicella: What has been concluded in the scientific literature is that there is an association between periodontal disease and several chronic conditions. The three conditions with the strongest evidence of associations are the three conditions in our program:
- Heart disease
For example, we know that the inflammation associated with periodontal disease can make it more difficult for a patient with diabetes to control her blood glucose. We have found that members in the program who have diabetes and have started going to the dentist have better control of their blood glucose in subsequent years.
HLM: How do you find potential DMI participants?
Conicella: All of our dental and medical member data is on the same platform. That provides us with the advantage of having all the data in the same place. Our system can easily identify members who have the medical conditions we include in the program. We use a fairly broad algorithm that includes many, many diagnoses codes for identifying those members.
- CFO Exchange: Smartphones Poised to Disrupt Healthcare, Says Topol
- How Digital Strategy Shapes Patient Engagement at Boston Children's Hospital
- Half of All Primary Care, Internal Medicine Jobs Unfilled in 2013
- CNO on Hospital Redesign: 'You Can't Over-Communicate'
- Carondelet to Pay $35M to Settle Fraud Allegations
- Some Cancer Hospitals' Quality Data Will Soon Be Public
- Consumerism Drives Healthcare Branding, Rebranding Efforts
- PA Ranks See 'Phenomenal Growth,' Lack of Diversity
- 3 Traits Personality Assessments Can't Reveal
- CA Powers Up $80M HIE to 'Create Value in the Data'