It’s the event of the year — if not the decade — for U.S. organizations involved in disease management or chronic care. On April 23 the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released a request for proposal (RFP) inviting organizations to bid on Chronic Care Improvement pilot projects under Section 721 of the Medicare Modernization Act.

While the RFP has generally been viewed very positively, there are many potential pitfalls, particularly for organizations that do not have significant experience at chronic care programs.

Are you interested in more information about the RFP? There have been several excellent analyses and commentaries specifically on the RFP and more generally about the CMS Chronic Care Improvement program:

Medicare’s Chronic Care Improvement Pilot Program: What Is Its Potential?
National Health Policy Forum; May 10, 2004
This article is an excellent recap and analysis of the pros and cons of the CMS RFP.

Population-Based Disease Management Under Fee-For-Service Medicare
Health Affairs; July 30, 2003
At the May 13 CMS bidder’s conference, Sandra Foote, the author of this article, was announced as the new director of the CMS Chronic Care Improvement project. She previously directed the Health Insurance Reform Project at the George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

Update on the New Medicare Chronic Care Improvement Program
Audioconference PowerPoint presentations are available from:
Christobel Selecky, CEO of Lifemasters and President Elect of the Disease Management Association of America
Vince Kuraitis, Principal, Better Health Technologies

Chronic Care Improvement: How Medicare Transformation Can Save Lives, Save Money, and Stimulate an Emerging Technology Industry
Information Technology Association of America, May 2004
This report focuses on the role of technology in transforming chronic care.

Perspective: Integrating Disease Management Into The Outpatient Delivery System During And After Managed Care
Health Affairs; May 19, 2004
This article by Victor Villagra, President of Health and Technology Vector and Past-President of DMAA, provides perspectives on better integrating physicians into disease management.

Additional Resources:

MMA Creates Framework for Transforming Chronic Care. DMAA Testifies before Ways & Means on Merits & Challenges of CCIP
Disease Management Association of America Press Release; May 11, 2004

Congresswoman Nancy L. Johnson (R-CT) Calls Hearing on Medicare Chronic Care Improvement Program
Disease Management Association of America Press Release; May 11, 2004

Medicare Exploring Changes In Pay For Chronic Care
ACP Observer, May 2004

Bush Administration Approach to Chronic Care Leaves out Doctors
PPI Health Policy Wire; May 20, 2004

CMS Bidder’s Conference Materials

McClellan Says Medicare Chronic Care Pilot Program Would Reduce Costs, Improve Treatment; May 12, 2004

The Promise and Pitfalls of Disease Management in Medicaid and Medicare
American Enterprise Institute Event; March 22, 2004

U.S. Subcommittee on Health: Hearing on Medicare Chronic Care Improvement Program
May 11, 2004

A Conference & Exhibition on the Convergence of Consumer and Healthcare Technologies
Special Focus on Telehomecare & Remote Patient Monitoring
July 8 – 9, 2004, Cambridge, MA

The Healthcare Unbound conference brochure is now available.

Forrester Research recently coined the term “Healthcare Unbound” to encompass the technology-enabled shift toward self-care, mobile care, and home care. Healthcare Unbound technologies will transform health care and empower healthcare consumers to promote wellness and manage diseases.

Conference faculty includes:

William Novelli, Executive Director & CEO, AARP

Joseph Kvedar, MD, Partners Telemedicine; President-Elect, American Telemedicine Association

Vince Kuraitis, JD, Better Health Technologies

Eric Dishman, Intel Proactive Health Research

Elizabeth Boehm, Forrester Research

Alice Pentland, MD, Center for Future Health, U. of Rochester

Steven Intille, MIT Home of the Future

Robin Felder, Medical Automation Research Center, U. of Virginia

Victor Villagra, MD, President, Health & Technology Vector, Inc.

Ron Poropatich, MD, Past-President, American Telemedicine Association

Carol Rozwell, Gartner

….and many others

Supporting organizations include the Disease Management Association of America (DMAA) and America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP).

Disease Management Conferences


E-CareManagement News has arranged for a special discount to the excellent Disease Management Colloquium, June 27 – 30, 2004, at Jefferson Medical School In Philadelphia, PA

E-CareManagement News subscribers qualify for the special discounted registration rate of $1595 for the Disease Management Colloquium. This constitutes a discount of $300 off of the full registration rate. The $1595 rate applies prospectively only. This special rate covers the Colloquium only, and not the preconference symposia on Sunday, June 27, 2004.

The E-CareManagement News discount code is BHT. It can be entered on the online registration page at “Optional Registration Code” and will cause the discounted rate to be charged. Alternatively, you may print the down loadable registration form on the website and enter the discount code BHT and the amount. The completed form can be faxed to (215) 545-8107or send to: Disease Management Colloquium, .1211 Locust St., Philadelphia, PA 19107. For more information about this special discount offer call (800) 546-3750 or email


DMAA Invites Comment on New Paper: Principles for Assessing Disease Management Outcomes
Disease Management Association of America; May 2004

Table of Contents — Special Theme Issue on eHealth and IT
British Medical Journal; May 15, 2004

Chronic Disease Registries: A Product Review
California HealthCare Foundation; May 20, 2004

eHealth Striving For Critical Mass
eHealth Institute, May 2004

E-CareManagement News is a complimentary e-newsletter sent to over 3,000 worldwide readers courtesy of Better Health Technologies, LLC .

For business and clinical decision makers who are developing innovative approaches to managing chronic diseases, Better Health Technologies is an eHealth and disease management consulting company that can assist you with strategy/business planning, finding financing, finding initial customers, and developing key partnerships.

Disclosure — No clients were mentioned in this issue.

You may copy, reprint or forward all or part of this newsletter to friends, colleagues or customers, as long as the use is not for resale or profit and the following copyright notice is included intact. Copyright © 2004, Better Health Technologies, LLC. All rights reserved

We welcome your opinions and comments. Write or call Vince Kuraitis JD, MBA at at (208) 395-1197.