Nearly half of adults over the age of 18 in the United States have hypertension, commonly known as high blood pressure. The condition often co-occurs with other health issues, which makes management extremely difficult. Patients are often faced with complex medication regimens, putting a strain on adherence that can ultimately increase the risk of stroke, coronary artery disease, congestive heart failure, end-stage renal disease, and death. Despite the health risks associated with uncontrolled blood pressure, it's commonly reported that less than half of U.S. adults with hypertension adhere to their medications.
This nonadherence can be attributed to a multitude of factors. Some patients may have difficulty remembering to take their medications, while others may struggle with side effects. Since each person with hypertension has unique health issues and life circumstances that play into their medication adherence, increasing their adherence necessitates a personalized approach. But health plans that supply care for large, diverse member populations may lack the resources necessary to customize care for each patient.
To help, Scene leverages a comprehensive medication adherence solution to provide individualized care at scale. By partnering with Scene, health plans can solve many of the challenges they face for hard-to-reach populations with hypertension while improving outcomes, lowering costs, and meeting quality metrics; these include:
Improving adherence and outcomes beyond the clinical setting
In clinical settings, each dose of medication is administered and monitored by a trained healthcare professional. This practice is referred to as Directly Observed Therapy (DOT), and it's the gold standard for medication adherence. With DOT, adherence is verified as each dose is observed. But once patients leave the hospital or doctor's office, they lose access to medical professionals that provide the direction, advice, and encouragement necessary to ensure adherence. Outside of the clinical setting, many patients may need help to remain motivated and committed to their treatment plans, and providers and health plans are forced to rely on patient self-reporting of their adherence or prescription refill data to determine if patients are adhering to their medications.
To solve this challenge, Scene scales and enhances DOT with video technology to bring medication support outside the clinical setting. Through Scene's video DOT platform, patients can record videos of themselves taking their medications anytime and anywhere. A care team of pharmacists, nurses, and health coaches engage with each patient to review their video submissions and offer feedback and support through video-back and in-app chats. As a new feature for hypertension, Scene's platform allows patients to remotely share video and audio-recorded self-reports of blood pressure outcomes with their health plans, providers, and Scene Health's care team. This feature empowers patients to take control of their health and enables health plans to document value-based outcomes.
Addressing adherence barriers related to social determinants of health
Barriers related to Social Determinants of Health (SDOH) play a significant role in contributing to poor medication adherence among individuals with hypertension and subsequently affect a patient's ability to control their blood pressure. A lack of safe and stable housing, transportation, education, nutrition, and even literacy can hinder patients' ability to obtain and take their medications. Unfortunately, many health plans don't address these SDOH barriers, creating gaps in care and widening health inequity. Factors contributing to this lack of action on behalf of health plans include limited awareness of how SDOH barriers influence a patient's medication adherence and resource constraints or budgetary limitations that prioritize clinical interventions over addressing SDOH barriers.
Even when health plans have resources to combat SDOH barriers, patients may need to learn about those resources or have trouble accessing them, especially those who are older or with limited literacy or technology skills.
Scene's solution is to leverage a personalized care team of pharmacists, nurses, and health coaches to connect with each patient to understand their circumstances, identify SDOH barriers, and help them access available health plan resources. Where health plans may not consider the diverse contexts of their patients, Scene confronts them head-on with a program built to accommodate any of the challenges that patients may face. This work might be as straightforward as pointing patients to their health plan's resources website or as involved as guiding patients through every step of resource navigation.
Individualizing care to improve outcomes
In hypertension, coexisting conditions, medical history, and SDOH all affect how patients respond to interventions and make a one-size-fits-all approach ineffective. When health plans rely on broad, standardized treatments, they can create gaps in care for the most in-need patients.
Beyond identifying and addressing SDOH barriers, Scene can individualize care on behalf of health plans on a large scale. With a care team committed to building strong relationships with patients, Scene fosters trust and humanizes the intervention process. Through daily one-on-one patient-centered interactions, the Scene care team often develops close relationships with those they serve. With Scene's video technology, Scene care team members have a unique window into the lives of each patient. And through that process, team members often become privy to — and can help patients deal with — a variety of personal challenges that can affect adherence or their general health.
Making it all easy
Scene partners with health plans to make providing patient-centered, individualized care to every patient with hypertension easy. By tackling one issue — medication adherence — through one supercharged intervention — Scene's medication engagement program — Scene can tackle multiple challenges simultaneously on a large scale. Scene bridges gaps in care outside of the clinical setting, identifies and addresses barriers related to SDOH, and provides opportunities for patients to have meaningful touch points with healthcare professionals. This work ensures that each patient receives the tailored support they need to effectively manage their hypertension and enhance their overall health.
Contact us to learn more about how Scene's customized approach can help provide comprehensive and effective care for your populations struggling with hypertension.