5 Trends in Healthcare Include Antibiotic Overuse, Childhood Obesity Strategies: NCQA

Childhood obesity and overuse of antibiotics are among the five trends healthcare advocates are targeting, according to the State of Health Care Quality Report 2013 from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA).

  • Overuse of antibiotics is still a concern Despite warnings from the CDC about the overuse of antibiotics leading to antibiotic resistance, there has been no progress on this issue, the NCQA reports. Overuse is the main cause of antibiotic resistance, a public health menace that sickens 2 million people and kills 23,000 every year.
  • Increased attention to childhood obesity Measures to fight childhood obesity have improved for the second consecutive year, including assessing children for obesity, counseling them on physical activity and advising them about nutrition.
  • Childhood immunizations More kids enrolled in Medicaid HMOs are receiving recommended immunizations for influenza and rotavirus. But there has been no recovery in the alarming decline NCQA found three years ago in rates of children enrolled in commercial HMOs who receive other critical immunizations.
  • Drop in substance abuse treatment, especially in Medicare The proportion of people diagnosed as chemically dependent who proceed to recommended, timely treatment has declined dramatically over several years. The drop has been largest in Medicare plans, suggesting that America’s fast-growing senior population is more likely not to get needed treatment for addiction.
  • More Medicaid enrollees like their care Medicaid enrollment is growing and will continue to grow with the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Fortunately, patients are increasingly happy with their doctors — primary care and specialists — in their Medicaid plans.

Source: NCQA, October 23, 2013


38 Disease Management Metrics: Population Health Benchmarks to Drive Accountable Care dives deep into several years of market research to document the role and outcomes of disease management in 11 key areas, as well as the high-focus diseases and health conditions of such initiatives as obesity and weight management and diabetes management.

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