The Health Coach Program is for uninsured patients with chronic disease. The primary role of the health coaches is to equip patients who are committed to improve their health with the knowledge, skills and confidence to better manage high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and other chronic conditions. The program takes place in two free clinics: BI Americares Free Clinic and Malta House of Care.
The field of health coaching emerged to fill an information gap, following research that shows half of patients leave medical visits without understanding their provider’s advice. It includes one-on-one interactions with patients to ensure they have the information they need, and understand what they need to do to be successful. The health coaches will also help to increase overall productivity at the clinic, freeing up providers’ time to treat more uninsured patients.
Lack of adherence to medical advice is a significant problem in the United States and results in poor health outcomes for patients and significant burden on the healthcare system. In the United States, medication nonadherence alone is estimated to cost the system as much as $300 billion annually. This cross-sector collaboration is the result of an extensive assessment of community needs, existing community programming, and best practices in improving patient outcomes nationwide.
Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation also engaged community partners in program planning.