Newsroom > DHHS News Release

For Immediate Release
September 13, 2017

CONTACT
Julie Naughton, Public Information Officer, Communications and Legislative Services, (office) 402-471-1695 or (cell) 402-405-7202, julie.naughton@nebraska.gov  
 
Heritage Health Offers Preventative Programs to Ensure Improved Health

LINCOLN— One leading principle of Heritage Health, the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services’(DHHS) Medicaid managed-care program, is treating the whole individual – covering physical health, behavioral health and pharmacy services with one health plan – and encouraging behaviors that lead to healthy outcomes.

In addition to covering all medically necessary services within Medicaid managed care, each of  Heritage Health’s three managed care organizations -  Nebraska TotalCare, UnitedHealthcare Community Program of Nebraska and Well Care of Nebraska – offer additional services designed to encourage wellness and help prevent major health issues before they arise. They may include maternity programs aimed at helping mothers receive necessary prenatal care and deliver a healthy baby; weight loss programs to help members reach and maintain a healthy weight, and GED testing materials to encourage greater self-sufficiency for Medicaid members able to work.

“Heritage Health’s integration of services supports better communication among primary care providers and behavioral health providers, more opportunities for preventive care, and more consistent, comprehensive coverage for individuals,” said Thomas “Rocky” Thompson, interim director of the Division of Medicaid and Long-Term Care,  “The health plans’ additional offerings promote wellness and healthy outcomes by giving members additional tools to improve their health.”

A few examples of the positive health outcomes from focusing on the whole person:

  • A care coordinator at Nebraska TotalCare helped a 44-year old woman obtain a GED. After sending the member a study guidebook, a MemberConnections representative accompanied the member to Northeast Community College to meet with a counselor/testing coordinator. The member obtained her GED and decided to sign up to continue her education. Nebraska Total Care is also working with her on improving attendance at her doctor appointments and helping her identify public transportation options to assist with getting around town.
  • A formerly homeless UnitedHealthcare Community Program of Nebraska member began working with a housing navigator who helped him first to move into a homeless shelter, then into low-income senior housing. The housing navigator helped him obtain behavioral health services through Heritage Health. Before Heritage Health, he was incurring an average of three ER visits a month. That dropped to zero in 2017.
  • A 50-year-old man with unmanaged schizophrenia was isolating excessively due to his unmanaged yet recognized mental health symptoms. He had no support other than his disability income and housing assistance. Since their first face-to-face meeting, WellCare’s care manager has helped the member to see a psychiatrist and receive medications, and he is receiving followup calls from care management that help remind him to go to his appointments. He calls his care manager to follow-up after his appointments and also regularly participates in physical rehabilitation for a shoulder injury.

For each of these Heritage Health members, value-added care management services make a significant difference in their lives, from learning about healthy pregnancies to receiving reminders about medication management.

For more information on these programs, please call 888-255-2605 or go online to www.neheritagehealth.com.

Open enrollment for the 2018 Heritage Health plan year begins on Nov. 1 and concludes on Dec. 15. Those enrolled who wish to stay with their 2017 plan will be automatically re-enrolled. 

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