EmblemHealth is pleased to announce our new fall-prevention program, the Steps-4-Safety PATH Program. Tthe program is now available to all your HIP Managed Long Term Care patients. Also eligible are HIP Medicare and Dual Eligible Special Needs Plan patients age 65 or older who meet the program's clinical requirements (e.g., at risk for a fall or had a recent fall or fracture).
As part of this program, you will have access to Web-based resources and proven strategies you can use to help your patients, our members, prevent and manage falls. In doing so, you may help your patients live longer while improving their quality of life.
In the coming months, emblemhealth.com will feature tools and information related to different aspects of fall prevention. We look forward to collaborating with you on this exciting new program. If you have any questions, please contact our Quality department at 1-888-447-5451.
Aspirin Therapy for Patients with Diabetes
In May 2010, the American Diabetes Association (ADA), American Heart Association (AHA) and American College of Cardiology (ACC) released a joint statement with new recommendations on aspirin use for the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in patients with diabetes.
Joint statement findings
Though trials to date have produced mixed results, overall they suggest that low-dose aspirin therapy is a reasonable measure for preventing a first heart attack or stroke among patients with diabetes who are also at high risk for heart disease. More research is needed to better define the specific effects of aspirin on diabetes, including any sex-specific effects.
ADA, AHA and ACC recommendations
For recommendations on aspirin use for the primary prevention of CVD in adults with diabetes, please refer to section five of the full statement Aspirin for Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Events in People with Diabetes. ADA, AHA and ACC continue to recommend low-dose aspirin for all patients who have previously had a heart attack or stroke (secondary prevention).
First, conduct a cardiovascular risk assessment
Whether aspirin therapy will be an effective prevention strategy depends on the accurate assessment of cardiovascular risk. It is also important to consider any additional risk factors patients may develop over time, as their emergence would require a reassessment of overall risk. Before aspirin therapy is prescribed, patients should be educated on its benefits and risks.
Several cardiovascular risk prediction tools are available, including the following:
Our goal is to provide our members with access to quality care, not to replace your clinical judgment or the treatment plan developed with your patient(s). We thank you for the quality care you provide our members.
American Diabetes Association, American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology. 2010. Aspirin for Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Events in People with Diabetes (accessed August 23, 2010). The joint statement was published in Diabetes Care (journal of the American Diabetes Association), Circulation (journal of the American Heart Association) and Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
American Heart Association. 2010. (http://www.newsroom.heart.org/index.php?s=43&item=1045) News release: "Aspirin recommended for heart health for people with diabetes at high risk" (accessed August 23, 2010).