A Health Care Experiment
By Arnold Kling
Called the Medicare Coordinated Care Demonstration
Coordinated care services are actions taken by a Registered Nurse (RN) Care Manager to help your doctor(s) determine your care. The RN Care Manager will also check on you at regular times and help set up the care you need. The RN Care Manager will help with sharing facts about your health care and needs with your doctor(s). This study is paid for by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services…
This study will assign patients by chance…to two groups. One group will get the extra services explained above…
The goal is to “increase [patients’] understanding of the care planned for them. It may also help cut hospital stays and improve the quality of their lives.”
My father signed up to participate as a patient in this study. I like the fact that (a) Medicare is looking into ways to better coordinate care and (b) they are evaluating the alternative using a rigorous controlled experiment.
It appears, however, that my father was assigned to the control group–the group that does not get the experimental RN Care Manager. We’ve been dealing with the existing system.
I have hopes that my father will rehabilitate under the existing system, but I would feel vindicated if in this experiment the treatment group has benefits that exceed the costs to an extent that is statistically significant.