MedEncentive - Rewarding Better Health
Fall 2008 e-Update

Trial results over four years surpass all expectations.
 It is time to spread the good news…

Last week I travelled to Duncan, Oklahoma to present the good news about the City’s annual healthcare cost results for its employee health benefit plan. Assembled to receive the news was the City’s employee benefits committee. The committee is comprised of representatives from the City’s many depart­ments and two labor unions.

As I began to report this year’s results, I could sense there was a great deal of anticipation. Everyone was quiet and straight-faced. The information was hot off the press and I had not had time to print reports. So I resorted to showing graphs from my laptop. This only heightened the suspense. As the good news began to take hold, the room filled with questions and comments. The most important question was asked by a gentle­man whose name on his blue shirt was partially hidden by his jacket. “So what do you recommend we do next year to keep it up?,” he asked.  With this I knew that the City of Duncan’s work­force had been trans­formed from a medical disaster in 2004 to a well informed “culture of health.” I must tell you that it was one of the most rewarding experiences I have had in my pro­fessional life.

The results speak for them­selves. The preliminary “all-in claims” cost savings over the four year trial have grown to over $1.7 million against the program’s cost of approxi­mately $181,000. This equates to a return on in­vestment that is greater than 8:1. In fact, the aver­age an­nual costs for the four years since imple­menting MedEncentive are less than the baseline costs five years ago.

Speaking of MedEncentive, City Man­ager Clyde Shaw summed it up perfectly:

“It saves us money and the employees love it.”

All of our other customers report that their health plan members really like our program. In in­stances where our customers can effectively measure year-over-year costs trends, all of them re­port cost savings since implement­ing MedEncentive. Those that have engaged their workforce to some degree, like the City of Duncan, are reporting the best results. So the formula for success seems clear - combine MedEncentive with a culture of health and healthcare costs will be con­tained.

In today’s troubled times, healthcare costs are a huge underlying drain on the economy. Health­care costs are bankrupting individuals, businesses, governments and our country. Everyone agrees that something must be done. Well, for four years the City of Duncan, the local doctors and MedEncentive have been doing something and it has exceeded all expectations. It is time for leaders to stop talking about policies and un­proven or illogical solutions. It is time for the nation to pay attention to what has been happening in Duncan, Oklahoma.

So my answer to the question about “what do I recommend for next year” is straight-forward. “Business leaders, health insurers, employers, policymakers, politicians and all who are concerned about the high cost of healthcare need to push for the rapid expansion of our program. Everyone will benefit.”

The following are some of the highlights for the summer and fall of 2008:

Newt Gingrich Lauds MedEncentive
MedEncentive Outperforms Other Employer Sponsored Health Program
Oklahoma Academy of Family Physician’s Elects to Support MedEncentive
MedEncentive Offers Grant for Independent Evaluation
Washington Hospital Adopts MedEncentive
MedEncentive Selected to Present at Two Prestigious Conferences
MedEncentive Unveils New Logo and Website
News Articles and Press Releases
Speaking Engagements and Conferences
Strategic Advisors
E-Update Archives

Newt Gingrich Lauds MedEncentive – Earlier this year, former U.S. Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich spoke at the Oklahoma Healthcare Summit. Having founded the Center for Health Transformation and written four books on the subject, Speaker Gingrich is a well-known expert on the topic. I was asked to dine with the Speaker prior to his speech. It was not long be­fore he and I were discussing Maslow, Pavlov, the process of transference and other behavioral science that drives MedEncentive’s efficacy. As a complete surprise to me, the Speaker perfectly de­scribed the MedEncentive process using his own words in his after dinner speech. Click on the following link to view his 45 second description.

Watch It Now! 

Subsequently, MedEncentive joined the Center for Health Transformation with expectations of making a truly transformational contribution.

MedEncentive Outperforms Other Employer Sponsored Health Programs – In September, Hewitt Associates published a national survey that measured employee participation rates in em­ployer sponsored health programs such as smoking cessation, weight man­agement, on-site clinics, lab screening, etc. Participation in health programs is the critical first step toward cost con­tainment. The adjacent graph illustrates the relatively low levels of employee participation in these types of pro­grams. We have superimposed MedEncentive’s participation rate. This helps explain why our customers are achieving cost containment while other much more expensive programs are not.

Oklahoma Academy of Family Physician’s Elects to Support MedEncentive – After pre­senting MedEncentive to the leadership of the Oklahoma Academy of Family Physicians, we re­ceived a letter of support. We are very pleased that the OAFP recognizes the importance of the MedEncentive program to its membership and physicians at-large. This development further il­lustrates the physician-friendly attributes of our program.

MedEncentive Offers Grant for Independent Evaluation – At the National Business Coali­tion on Health’s annual convention in Washington, DC, we announced a three year grant to be awarded to one or more organizations willing and able to conduct an independent evaluation of MedEncentive’s efficacy. Proposals will be accepted through mid-January with a launch date set for the second quarter of 2009. The minimum sample size is 5,000 health plan members in a sin­gle contiguous location. We are targeting local business coalitions, but other types of organiza­tions are welcome to propose.

Washington Hospital Adopts MedEncentive – Lourdes Health System of Pasco, Washington adopted the MedEncentive program for its employee health benefit plan early this year. Lourdes is part of Ascension Health, the country’s largest hospital system. This installation was note­worthy for a number of reasons. First, it was accomplished at a remote site unseen, through a third party consultant. The consultant had to sell our program to the local nurses union before it was accepted. The employee orientation consisted of our informational kits sent by mail from an electronic employment roster.

The results have been impressive. Though physician participation has remained low, employee par­ticipation has been very good, and Lourdes is reporting preliminary cost savings. This confirms the scalability potential of our program.

MedEncentive Selected to Present at Two Prestigious Conferences – It appears that healthcare incentives are becoming a hot topic. MedEncentive was selected to present at two prestigious health care con­ferences this fall.  Jeff Greene presented to the General Session at the inaugural National Healthcare Incentive Institute in Washington, DC on October 20. The speak­ers’ panel at this conference was very impressive. Jeff’s presentation was preceded by Nobel Laureate, Kenneth Arrow.

Jeff was accompanied by Cliff Winburn and Jim Dempster, along with Karen Wicker of Schnake Turnbo Frank|PR to the Health 2.0 Annual Conference in San Francisco on October 22. MedEncentive was one of only two new start-up ventures invited to present a “Deep Dive” ses­sion at the sold out affair. Also attending was Greg Main, Oklahoma’s former Secretary of Commerce. Greg joined us on stage during our presentation to announce that the state is plan­ning to invest in MedEncentive.

We are currently responding to a host of inquiries from these conferences. Click this link to read the associated press release. 2008 Fall Conferences

MedEncentive Unveils New Logo and Website – At the Health 2.0 Conference in San Francisco, we unveiled the new MedEncentive logo and website. We contracted with Health Quality Advisors, Davidow Communications, and KinneyKusek of Chicago to revamp and upgrade our website and image. The objective of this upgrade was to achieve a more professional image that would appeal to larger prospective cus­tomers. We believe the mission has been accomplished. Check us out at http://www.medencentive.com/.

News Articles and Press Releases – We have received a good bit of recent publicity with local and national press. This includes featured articles in the Employer Benefit Adviser magazine and The New Health Dialogue Blog, plus newspaper articles in the Tulsa World and Journal Record. You can read these articles and more on our website at http://www.medencentive.com/.

Speaking Engagements and Conferences – Listed below are the speaking engagements and conferences that took place (or are planned) during the summer and fall of 2008:

 

  • Information Therapy Annual Conference, Washington, DC, July 18, 2008 – We were invited to present to this conference for the third time in four years. We believe MedEncentive represents the best example of a commercially viable application of the in­formation therapy principles.
  • Tri-State Business Coalition on Health, Quincy, Illinois, September 24, 2008 – Local employers seeking healthcare cost containment solutions were in attendance. Also at­tending were presidents of coalitions in Madison, WI, Rockford, IL, and Memphis, TN, plus representatives from Mercer’s St. Louis office. This presentation helped us move forward with the independent evaluation grant.
  • National Healthcare Incentive Institute, Washington, DC, October 20, 2008 – see de­scription above
  • Health 2.0, San Diego and San Francisco, October 22, 2008 – See description above. Our invitation to make the Deep Dive presentation was prompted by a brief presentation we made at Health 2.0’s Spring Fling in San Diego.
  • The National Business Coalition on Health Annual Conference, Washington, DC, November 10-12, 2008 - NBCH is a trade association of regional coalitions comprised of employer members dedicated to value-based purchasing of health care services through collective action.  NBCH has a membership of nearly 60 employer-led coalitions across the United States, representing over 10,000 employers and approximately 34 million em­ployees and their dependents.

    NBCH is supporting us in communicating our recently announced grant to local coali­tions.
  • Consumer World Health Conference, Washington, DC, December 8, 2008 – Jeff will participate on a panel to discuss new ideas in the area of consumer health.

Strategic Advisors –We always want to take this opportunity to recognize and thank MedEncentive’s list of strategic advisors and supporters who include:

 

  • Drs. Susan Chambers and David Parke, MedEncentive co-founders
  • Greg Main, Tom Francis, Jim Rogers, and company with i2E
  • Mike Joseph, and Jennifer Wheeler with McAfee and Taft law firm
  • Larry Grable with Tomlinson & O’Connell law firm
  • Dick Rush and company with the Oklahoma State Chamber of Commerce
  • Chuck Rahill with Wedel Rahill and Associations
  • Renzi Stone and company with Saxum Strategic Communications
  • Cindy Mitas, Business Development Marketing Director, Francis Tuttle
  • Ken Schuerman, special advisor


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