With more than 80,000 Mainers suffering from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), primary care providers are confronted with the disease multiple times every day. To help them maintain confidence and skill managing the disease, the MaineHealth ACO has collaborated with the MaineHealth Chronic Disease program and consulting pulmonologists to create an easily accessible set of diagnosis, treatment and referral tools. The set of tools is collected under the name COPD Assist, and can be found at mainehealth.org/mainehealth-accountable-care-organization/provider-resources/copd-assist.
COPD Assist includes:
- A downloadable detailed guide to care. Print copies of the guide may also be ordered.
- Downloadable referral guidelines.
- An online CME learning module, made up of three short videos, that details the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) disease management guidelines.
All components of COPD Assist have been vetted by a MaineHealth COPD Workgroup. Funding for their development was provided by a Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Quality Grant.
“At the national level, the CDC has identified COPD as the third leading cause of death and projects it’ll be responsible for over $90 billion in healthcare spending by 2020. Both those numbers are humbling, but also motivating. Here at the local ACO and system level, we’ve made a commitment to do something about COPD. We’re creating COPD clinical pathways and identifying opportunities for care improvement,“ says Dr. Jeff Aalberg, CMO of the MaineHealth ACO. “The COPD Assist project responds to the need by putting an elegant and simple set of tools in the hands of the providers who can do the most to improve patient outcomes: primary care clinicians. I’m excited to get it out there.”
In the next few weeks, all primary care providers participating in the ACO will receive a packet of COPD Assist materials in the mail. In the meantime, we encourage clinicians to explore the tools at mainehealth.org/mainehealth-accountable-care-organization/provider-resources/copd-assist.