For HHS agencies looking to capitalize on the power of analytics: Sometimes, less is more

“Don’t bite off more than you can chew.” “Don’t boil the ocean.” “Less is more.” Pick your cliché about avoiding the risk of trying to do too much and accomplishing little. The fact is, all clichés have some truth to them — and “starting small” can lead to big results. Health and Human Services (HHS) […]
Read More »

Spotlight on Caring: Angela H.

As a clinician myself, I have seen the power of the in-home assessment to help members live healthier lives—a key aspect of our mission. The work our Optum HouseCalls clinicians do often results in members reaching out to tell us how a visit made all the difference in their lives. In this example, proactive care […]
Read More »

Well-being research reveals employee expectations

The health care industry talks a lot about workplace well-being from the employer or health plan perspective. But we wondered, what do employees think about well-being? And how might their perspectives translate to improved health offerings and outcomes? To learn more about this important topic, Optum recently partnered with the National Business Group on Health® […]
Read More »

It’s never too late to get started with fitness

Do you ever wonder if it makes sense to start exercising now, at this age? Perhaps you were never an athlete, or were once active but got stuck in the grind of everyday life, and getting to the gym just slipped to the bottom of your priorities. How on earth can you get back in […]
Read More »

Workplace well-being: How do Silicon Valley employers compare?

How do Silicon Valley employers compare to other employers across the U.S. when it comes to addressing employee well-being? Optum recently analyzed its survey of national employers to gauge how Silicon Valley firms stack up. Below are some key insights from our analysis. Behavioral health and substance use disorder (SUD): Addressing mental health stigma and SUD is critical for nearly all employers. Silicon Valley companies measured slightly behind others in their plans to […]
Read More »

Athleisure is a trend, but good health is always in style

Athleisure — yoga pants, hoodies and other fashionable activewear — is making big moves in the marketplace. This sporty attire is considered exercise-worthy yet stylish enough to transition to life outside the fitness center. And its popularity is showing no signs of slowing down. According to MarketWatch, the global market growth for athleisure is expected […]
Read More »

Curb the trend of complex, costly conditions with a comprehensive strategy

It’s not news that health care costs are rising. But did you know that a handful of costly, complex conditions are driving a quarter of the total health care spending in the United States?1 Four condition categories are responsible for driving roughly $455 billion dollars in costs: cancer, cardiovascular disease, musculoskeletal conditions and kidney disease. […]
Read More »

The bridge that is EVV

Across the challenges and complexities of Medicaid, few phrases roll off the tongue in this community with more negative overtones than “electronic visit verification” (EVV).  To the casual listener, these three words may be jarring to the ear, conjuring up “Big Brother images,” a Governmental oversight “gotcha” mentality based on distrust – all of which […]
Read More »

Specialty Rx: An exponential challenge for health plans

Health plans are seeing exponential growth in both the use and medical cost expense of specialty medications. In the past decade, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved more than 250 specialty medications. By 2020, specialty medications are estimated to cost $400 billion. Forty percent of that cost is expected to be paid under […]
Read More »

MSK and office ergonomics: Moving beyond the chair

Not long ago, the prevailing wisdom was to buy an ergonomic chair when an employee was missing work because of chronic back pain. Or, if an employee suffered from carpal tunnel syndrome, employers could purchase an ergonomic keyboard to ease the pain. Those are both worthy and beneficial options, of course. But musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions […]
Read More »