Behavior-based diabetes management: Impact on care, hospitalizations, and costs

Document Type


Date of Original Version



OBJECTIVES: To (1) examine the impact of the Diabetes Care Rewards (DCR) program on adherence to care standards and (2) evaluate the economic impact of adherence to care standards. STUDY DESIGN: A retrospective observational cohort study design with propensity matching. Additional covariates adjustment was used to minimize residual imbalance. METHODS: Utilization and cost data were compared between individuals enrolled vs individuals eligible for but not enrolled in the DCR program using a standard mean difference. Individuals were employees or their dependents from self-insured companies throughout the United States. Outcomes included adherence to the care standards, service utilization, and costs. RESULTS: A total of 3318 propensity-matched participants were included. Primary analysis revealed that enrolled members increased adherence to semiannual glycated hemoglobin, annual lipid, and annual urine albumincreatinine ratio testing. Additionally, enrolled members experienced less utilization of high-acuity services and increased rates of physician visits. In a secondary analysis, the enrolled group was associated with greater pharmaceutical costs but lower medical costs. CONCLUSIONS: A behavioral science- and incentive-based diabetes management program was associated with greater rates of adherence to recommended diabetes monitoring care standards, increased routine clinic visits, decreased hospital admissions, and decreased inpatient days. Anticipated increases in pharmaceutical expenditures were offset by overall lower medical expenditures. Results indicate the economic benefits of adherence to evidencebased standards for diabetes care.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

American Journal of Managed Care