NACDD Work on Diabetes Honored with National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion’s 2020 National Health Equity Award

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CONTACT: Zunera Mirza, zmirza@chronicdisease.org

ATLANTA (Feb. 18, 2021) – The CDC’s National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion has awarded the Medicaid Coverage for the National Diabetes Prevention Program (National DPP) Demonstration Project the 2020 Health Equity Award. NACDD and its partners contributed to the success of the Medicaid Demonstration Project. The award highlights NACDD’s leadership on CoverageToolkit.org, state technical assistance, and the Medicaid Learning Collaborative.

The CDC’s Division of Diabetes Translation provided project funding through the CDC Center for State, Tribal, Local, and Territorial Support and NACDD facilitated the work to determine how the National DPP lifestyle change program could be provided to the Medicaid population.

The Demonstration was carried out in Maryland and Oregon, which were selected via a competitive process. The two states were funded from July 2016 through January 2019 to demonstrate how state Medicaid agencies could collaborate with State Health Departments to implement delivery models for the National DPP lifestyle change program for Medicaid beneficiaries at high risk for type 2 diabetes. The demonstration project utilized managed care organizations or accountable care organizations for this delivery system.

“Continuing coverage of Medicaid’s HealthChoice National DPP lifestyle change program is a crucial component in Maryland’s broader strategy to reduce both type 2 diabetes and associated health-related disparities that affect Medicaid beneficiaries,” said Acting Maryland Department of Health Secretary Dennis R. Schrader. “We’re honored to be recognized alongside our National DPP demonstration project partners as we continue our commitment to improving access to care for vulnerable populations.”

The Medicaid Demonstration Project’s ultimate goal was to learn about both successes and challenges and to engage stakeholders in the two states to advance understanding of how to achieve sustainable coverage of the National DPP lifestyle change program for Medicaid beneficiaries under current Medicaid authorities.

“Oregon wanted to lead with an equity-centered approach to diabetes prevention,” said Lori Coyner, State Medicaid Director, Oregon. “To accomplish this, we connected our Medicaid population with community trusted partners for this important work,” she said.

“We are looking forward to continuing our partnership with CDC, NACDD, and Oregon’s Coordinated Care Organizations to build on our success in the demonstration and continue to implement diabetes prevention across the state,” she said.

NACDD has worked with CDC’s Division of Diabetes Translation for more than 30 years to support national and state efforts to prevent and manage diabetes and its complications. NACDD first begin its diabetes-related work through the Diabetes Council, which is a thought-leadership group comprised of state health workers who conduct diabetes programming in every U.S. state and territory. Currently, NACDD leads and maintains many strategies to sustain and expand enrollment and coverage for both the National DPP and diabetes self-management education and support (DSMES) services.

A crucial part of NACDD’s diabetes work is to secure the National DPP as a covered benefit among states, with Maryland and Oregon as some of the first states to achieve Medicaid coverage for the National DPP. By expanding Medicaid coverage in states, populations at the highest risk for type 2 diabetes now have access to the evidence-based National DPP lifestyle change program, a key component to achieving health equity in diabetes prevention efforts.

“NACDD strives to be proactive in promoting justice and health equity,” 
said John W. Robitscher, MPH, NACDD’s CEO. “Innovative strategies addressing health inequities are needed, and we are thrilled that Maryland and Oregon have made the National DPP lifestyle change program a Medicaid benefit,” he said.

Notable impacts included in the award:

  • An online National DPP Coverage Toolkit was developed to share information to other states interested in pursuing Medicaid coverage for the National DPP lifestyle change program. 
  • Lessons learned from the project were incorporated into technical assistance provided to three cohorts of State Health Departments and their Medicaid counterparts participating in CDC’s 6|18 Initiative.
  • Medicaid beneficiaries enrolled in the National DPP lifestyle change program during the demonstration achieved positive outcomes. Almost 93% of participants across both states were “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with the program overall, and 86% were “satisfied/very satisfied” with the lifestyle coaches.
  • Both Maryland and Oregon were successful in achieving Medicaid coverage for the National DPP lifestyle change program. 
    • On Sept. 1, 2019, Maryland was authorized to make the program available to HealthChoice managed care participants statewide. 
    • Oregon’s Health Evidence Review Commission approved the National DPP lifestyle change program as a Medicaid benefit effective January 2019.

The National Association of Chronic Disease Directors
Promoting Health. Preventing Disease. 

The National Association of Chronic Disease Directors (NACDD) and its more than 7,000 Members seek to strengthen state-based leadership and expertise for chronic disease prevention and control in states and nationally. Established in 1988, in partnership with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, NACDD is the only membership association of its kind to serve and represent every chronic disease division in all states and U.S. territories. For more information, visit chronicdisease.org.