Microclinic International, Citizen Effect and Humana, Inc. Join Forces to Fight Preventable Diseases

In an effort to help promote healthier lifestyles and lifelong well-being, the Microclinic International (formerly the Global Micro-Clinic Project or GMCP), Citizen Effect, and Humana have teamed up to create a well-being program in Kentucky. A pilot is slated to start by fall 2011. The program, sponsored by Humana and implemented by GMCP with support from Citizen Effect, will build on the power of positive peer influence to help people adopt healthy behaviors so they may live longer, healthier lives.

Why Kentucky?
Like many areas throughout the U.S., Kentucky has seen an increase in the number of people affected by preventable diseases. In fact, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently reported that 15 southern states have regions with diabetes rates above 11 percent, compared to 8.5 percent in the rest of the country. In addition, Humana, headquartered in Louisville, wants to help people in its home state live healthier lives.

Working hand-in-hand with the community
A key to this program is using existing community resources to create a positive circle of influence on each individual’s health. The program is intended to find solutions tailored to the needs of the individual in collaboration with the community itself.

The Global Micro-Clinic Project will work with local community partners to design and implement an innovative model of community health programming. Citizen Effect, a nonprofit organization that connects citizen philanthropists with critical projects, will conduct a fundraising pilot to support a future expansion of this program.

For more information about these organizations, visit www.humana.com/ and www.citizeneffect.org.

This webpage will be updated periodically with new information as details of the program become finalized.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the goal of the program?
How was the pilot community identified?
Will the community have a say in how the program is structured overall?
Why is the pilot program focused on diabetes, heart disease and obesity?
Has a program like this been done before? Is this the first of its kind?
How is the program being funded?
Why is Humana sponsoring this program?
What’s Humana’s business reason for sponsoring a program like this?
How are you planning to measure results of the program?
How will those results be used?
How will participant’s individual data be kept private?
I have Humana insurance. How can I be sure my health information won’t be used by Humana to make decisions about my coverage or claims?
Who is eligible to participate in the program?
Am I expected to sign up for or purchase something if I decide to participate in the program?
Why did Humana choose to partner with the Global Micro-Clinic Project and Citizen Effect?
Why did the Global Micro-Clinic Project choose to partner with Humana?
Why did Citizen Effect choose to partner with Humana?

Q1: What is the goal of this program?
A1: The goal is to help people achieve lifelong well-being by helping them prevent and/or manage preventable diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and obesity.
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Q2: How was the pilot community identified?
A2: GMCP conducted research to assess the needs of a number of Kentucky communities and their existing resources to meet those needs (e.g. pre-existing community health programs, fitness centers, etc.) The Cumberland Valley was identified as an area with some of the greatest gaps and desire to try a new approach to preventing disease.
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Q3: Will the community help determine how the program is structured overall?
A3: GMCP will work very closely with the community on the program’s design. Ultimately, the health solutions will be developed and owned by the local community.
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Q4: Why is the pilot program focused on diabetes, heart disease and obesity?
A4: These three diseases are preventable when people learn to adopt healthy behaviors. In addition, GMCP’s research team reviewed extensive research on the state of health in Kentucky and found that these diseases have a very high prevalence (e.g. Kentucky is ranked 45th among all U.S. states for obesity). The social network program model is designed to address these diseases effectively and thus the combination of high need and effective solutions led to this program.
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Q5: Has a program like this been done before? Is this the first of its kind?
A5: This is the first time the program model is being tested in the United States. GMCP has other projects around the world.
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Q6: How is the program being funded?
A6: Humana is sponsoring this program in full during its pilot phase. Afterwards, various fundraising strategies will be designed and tested – including the citizen philanthropy model offered by Citizen Effect – to help finance the program and expand it to as many communities as possible.
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Q7: Why is Humana sponsoring this program?
A7: Humana’s vision is to help people achieve lifelong well-being. One of the ways Humana can do this is by empowering people to adopt healthy behaviors that can prevent chronic diseases. Humana believes that health choices can be positively influenced by a person’s close social network: family, friends, colleagues and others. That’s why Humana is sponsoring a program that will use the positive power of personal relationships to influence people’s behaviors towards better health and well-being.
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Q8: What’s Humana’s business reason for sponsoring a program like this?
A8: Humana believes that helping people live longer, healthier lives is good for society and good for business. Four preventable diseases – hypertension, heart disease, cancer and lung disease – are responsible for 50% of deaths around the world. This fact alone is a reason to act.

What’s more, chronic diseases represent hard financial costs – not just to the health care industry, but to the economy as a whole. Through sponsorship of this program, Humana hopes to help improve people’s health, their quality of life and the corresponding health care costs.
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Q9: How are you planning to measure results of the program?
A9: The program will be evaluated by independent researchers to ensure non-biased results. An independent academic partner evaluates baseline (start of program) characteristics of the participants such as age, major lifestyle and health factors (e.g. weight, blood pressure). The evaluation is repeated at various times throughout the program and upon completion of the program to assess improvements, if any.
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Q10: How will those results be used?
A10: Aggregate program results – containing no personally identifiable data – may be shared externally to help communicate about the program’s success and create opportunities for bringing this program to other communities that may benefit from it.

Individual health results will be kept confidential. For added privacy protection, participants will be assigned identification numbers so that their names do not appear on any forms. Only program staff directly overseeing the program will be able to access personally identifiable information. Finally, researchers are required to ask the participants’ permission if they want to use any part of their information for purposes other than the goals of the program itself.
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Q11: How will participant’s individual data be kept private?
A11: Individual health and identification information will be kept confidential by program staff.

For added privacy protection, participants will be assigned identification numbers so that their names do not appear on any forms. Only program staff directly overseeing the program will be able to access personally identifiable information. Finally, researchers are required to ask the participants’ permission if they want to use any part of their information for purposes other than the goals of the program itself.

In addition:

All medical partners of GMCP will comply with local patient confidentiality practices, including HIPAA in the United States
All program participants and controls will undergo a consent process that explains risks and benefits to participating in the program research or evaluation, including a discussion of privacy and confidentiality risks.
All paper data will be kept in a locked cabinet in a room that also locks.
All electronic data will be kept in a database with an encrypted password that is provided only to authorized GMCP employees and partner staff.
Research databases will be stored on computers or laptops with firewalls and encrypted passwords.

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Q12: I have Humana insurance. How can I be sure my health information won’t be used by Humana to make decisions about my coverage or claims?
A12: All individual health and identification information will be kept confidential by the nonprofit organization running the program (GMCP). No personally identifiable information will be shared with Humana. (See answer in above question for more details on privacy of data.)
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Q13: Who is eligible to participate in the program?
A13: Anyone who meets the program criteria (residents of the community who have been diagnosed with or are at risk for diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity) can participate in the program.

The participant can either be referred by a physician or assessed by program staff (trained nurses) who can make an assessment of the patient at the baseline of the program. For instance, if a participant wants to join because they believe they may be at risk for diabetes, a trained nurse affiliated with the program can perform a fasting blood glucose test on the individual.
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Q14: Am I expected to sign up for or purchase something if I decide to participate in the program?
A14: There are no costs attached to participation in this program. Participants are asked to enroll in the program, attend as many events as possible and adhere to the counsel of the local health experts throughout the program’s duration. The goal is for participants to take control of their own health and to help those around them.
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Q15: Why did Humana choose to partner with the Global Micro-Clinic Project and Citizen Effect?
A15: Humana and GMCP share a common goal of helping people live longer, healthier lives by fighting the spread of preventable diseases. Humana was drawn to GMCP’s innovative, research-led approach to fighting preventable diseases and its proven track record of success in helping people adopt healthier behaviors.

If the pilot program is successful, Humana and GMCP hope to expand this program to as many communities as possible. Humana was drawn to Citizen Effect because of the organization’s known success in helping bring about sustainable change in a community through citizen philanthropy. For this pilot program, Citizen Effect will engage citizen philanthropists for long-term support.

Humana is funding the pilot program in full but Citizen Effect’s fundraising pilot will be a key to future expansion of this program. Any funds raised during the pilot program will be used to engage more program participants.
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Q16: Why did the Global Micro-Clinic Project choose to partner with Humana?
A16: GMCP and Humana share a common goal of helping people live longer, healthier lives by fighting the spread of preventable diseases. Partnering with Humana enables both organizations to work towards Humana’s commitment to helping people achieve lifelong well-being, improving the lives of people in communities where access to healthcare is scarce, and is in line with its philosophy that health encompasses more than physical well-being.
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Q17: Why did Citizen Effect choose to partner with Humana?
A17: For this pilot program, Citizen Effect will engage citizen philanthropists to directly support a program to help people achieve lifelong well-being. Empowering individuals to support this effort is directly in line with Citizen Effect’s mission — providing citizens with the tools and management support they need to complete a small but critical philanthropic project.

Humana is funding the pilot program in full but Citizen Effect’s fundraising pilot will be a key to future expansion of this program. Any funds raised during the pilot program will be used to engage more program participants.
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For inquiries about this program, please contact:

Paul Gerrard, Humana
(502) 580-2990
pgerrard@humana.com

Leila Makarechi, Microclinic International
(650) 290-6650
info@microclinics.org

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