With two year funding from the Connecticut Health Foundation, Partners for a Healthier Connecticut plans to pilot new approaches to providing care as a way to reduce racial and ethnic health disparities among their patients. Partners for a Healthier Connecticut, based in East Hartford, was designed based on examinations of the health outcomes for patients by race and ethnicity – a critical step in identifying and addressing disparities. The grant grew out of a request by the Connecticut Health Foundation for health systems to use quality metrics to track disparities, implement interventions, and measure improvements.
Partners for a Healthier Connecticut is a collaborative led by Saint Francis Health Care Partners – an accountable care organization – and ConnectiCare. Based on data showing that black and Latino patients with type 2 diabetes have higher blood glucose levels and poorer outcomes than white patients, the organization plans to implement a new care model for adults with type 2 diabetes. As part of the model, patients will have access to a care coordinator who is a certified diabetes educator and better access to their providers, as well as a care team with a more holistic focus on their overall well-being. For example, patients who are unable to afford healthy food could be reimbursed for meal preparation kits, and patients who lack reliable transportation could be reimbursed for travel to health care visits. The organization also plans to integrate data from patients’ electronic health records with claims data from their insurer to generate a clearer picture of patients’ health.