What if people were rewarded for healthy habits — with money?
That’s the idea behind the bipartisan Medicare Better Health Rewards Program Act of 2012, presented to Congress as a way to improve healthcare and control costs. The three-year program uses the annual wellness visits Medicare already subsidizes to measure improvements in six key areas: body mass index, diabetes indicators, blood pressure, cholesterol, vaccination status and use of tobacco products.
Patients who show improvement will receive up to $400 after checkups in the program’s second and third years. The money to pay for those incentives will come from savings generated by seniors becoming healthy and using fewer healthcare services.
It’s a shift away from just treating chronic illnesses to preventing them in the first place.
Innovations in healthcare
What other innovations will come?
Every year, Cleveland Clinic asks that question of more than 110 of its physicians and researchers. Read about the next innovation relating to mammograms.