AHRQ Effective Health Care Materials Featured in Consumer Outreach
StayWell Health Management, a provider of population health management services, has incorporated AHRQ's Effective Health Care (EHC) Program guides for consumers into its pool of approved resources and has trained health coaches on their use.
StayWell learned about the guides while participating in AHRQ's EHC Tools for Business Project, and they have since become a regular part of StayWell's health coaching service for the organization's member employees, according to Michael Staufacker, MA, MCHES, StayWell's Director of Population Health Strategies.
"Feedback about the guides from the coaches was very positive and confirmed the company's initial impressions of their value. In addition to making a physician referral when coaching individuals about their health care, the health coaches now also make them aware of the guides," Staufacker says. "We make use of all the guides that are available, including the Spanish-language versions."
The AHRQ guides for patients and consumers are short, plain-language summaries of patient-centered outcomes research, also known as comparative effectiveness research, that focus on treatment options for a particular disease or condition. They contain systematic reviews of research about each condition to explain the benefits and harms of the different treatment options and other details that can help consumers and patients make informed health care decisions.
Founded in 1978, StayWell provides population health management services to many Fortune 5000 companies and health plans and helps these organizations to improve employee health and reduce health care costs. StayWell developed the first computerized health assessment and was instrumental in a landmark study to quantify the link between health risks and health care expenditures.
The AHRQ EHC Tools for Business Project is designed to engage the business community as a primary stakeholder to deliver the highest quality and best value care to all Americans. A primary goal of the project is to inform purchasers about the AHRQ consumer guides, describing how they can help employees make more informed decisions about their care.
AHRQ's EHC guides are available at http://www.effectivehealthcare.ahrq.gov/index.cfm.