HealthLeaders-InterStudy, a leading provider of managed care industry intelligence, finds that the Asheville Project -- a disease-management program that puts pharmacists at the center of care -- is preparing to expand into new areas for the third time. According to the latest issue of the North & South Carolina Health Plan Analysis from HealthLeaders-InterStudy, the project has already expanded to Ohio, Georgia, Wisconsin and Greensboro, N.C., since it was founded eight years ago in Asheville, N.C. Now the American Pharmacists Association Foundation is preparing to introduce it to even more cities.

"While disease management is an ingrained component of managed care across the country, putting the focus on pharmacists is an unusual model," said Jane DuBose, HealthLeaders-InterStudy analyst.

The program coordinates care for chronic diseases between pharmacists who meet one-on-one in monthly sessions with targeted employees. The project has expanded beyond diabetes to include asthma and hypertension.

  "In Asheville alone, some 1,000 people are participating," DuBose said.    Other health plan news in the Carolinas:    * BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina has begun rewarding physicians     and hospitals for meeting quality standards.   * WellPath Inc. has begun selling a limited-benefits product in North     Carolina that is geared to temporary, seasonal or part-time workers.   * The North Carolina Department of Insurance is shutting down its managed     care division.    About HealthLeaders-InterStudy 

HealthLeaders-InterStudy, a newly formed company of Decision Resources, Inc. (http://www.decisionresources.com/), is the authoritative source for managed care data, analysis, and news. For more information, please visit both Web sites at http://www.healthleaders.com/ and http://www.interstudypublications.com/.

All company, brand, or product names contained in this document may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.

   For more information, contact:     Alex Jablokow    Decision Resources    781-296-2562    ajablokow@dresources.com 

SOURCE: Decision Resources, Inc.

CONTACT: Alex Jablokow of Decision Resources, +1-781-296-2562,
ajablokow@dresources.com

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