Disease Management Update
Volume IV, No. 30
November 15, 2007

Dear Healthcare Intelligence Network Client,

While Disease Management is extremely important to any healthcare professional, health management is equally as important, and that is the focus of this week's DM Update. Exercise is one of the best ways to maintain good health, and that is exactly what the American College of Sports and Medicine along with the American Medical Association are promoting with their newest program.

Check out HIN's blog to read more about more ways you can incorporate exercise into your health management program.

Your colleague in the business of healthcare,
Laura M. Greene
Editor, Disease Management Update

If this is a forwarded copy of Disease Management Update and you like what you see, you can register to receive your own copy of this complimentary service. Sign up at:

Table of Contents

  1. ACSM & AMA to Launch Exercise is Medicine™
  2. Disease Management Q&A: Defining Vigorous Activity
  3. HealthSounds Podcast: Integrating Health Coaching Into a Comprehensive Health Management Effort
  4. Exercise Helps Repair Muscle Damage in Heart Failure Patients
  5. Survey of the Month: MRSA Education and Prevention
  6. Health Coaching Goes High Tech with Virtual Partnership

1. ACSM & AMA to Launch Exercise is Medicine™

A recent survey conducted of the public by American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) found that 65 percent of patients would be more interested in exercising to stay healthy if advised by their doctor and given additional resources. Over 40 percent of doctors talk to their patients about the importance of exercise, but don’t always offer suggestions on the best ways to be physically active. One-quarter of patients look to their doctor first for advice on exercise and physical activity, and turn next to fitness and health Web sites.

In response to the results, the American Medical Association (AMA) and ACSM developed Exercise is Medicine™, a new program designed to encourage America’s patients to incorporate physical activity and exercise into their daily routine. Exercise is Medicine™ calls on doctors to prescribe exercise to their patients. The program is designed to encourage physicians to record physical activity as a vital sign during patient visits. Able patients will be advised to participate in at least 30 minutes of physical activity and 10 minutes of stretching and light muscle training five days a week.

To read more about this study and the program, please visit:

2. Disease Management Q&A: Defining Vigorous Activity

Each week, healthcare professionals respond to a reader's query on an industry issue. This week's experts are Dr. Barbara Moore, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of Shape Up America!, a national campaign, and Eric J. Berman, D.O., M.S., medical director for Horizon BCBS-NJ and their joint venture with AtlantiCare Health System.

Question: What exactly comprises vigorous physical activity for children? Is this just free play or is there one activity that has been shown to be more beneficial than another?

Response: (Barbara Moore) Vigorous physical activity is not free unstructured play. (By the way, free play for children in America is diminishing and that is a very serious and negative trend.) Vigorous activity is planned around calisthenics activities. It depends on the equipment available in the school. Some schools have a gym available, so everything can be done inside one room. Other schools have playing fields where many of these activities can be done outside. The point is, they get these heart rates up and they keep them up for periods of 90 minutes. There are other studies showing that improving the quality of physical education within the school and lengthening physical education so that you get 75 minutes of actual activity makes a difference as well. There’s evidence that it improves BMI and reduces body fat.

(Eric Berman) As children get older, they need more structure to their activities. But for preschool kids, unstructured play may actually be a greater component of that activity. There are programs of structured exercise where moms and kids do stretching exercises, practice yoga, and play games. That’s important as well.

For more details on reducing childhood obesity via exercise, please visit:

We want to hear from you! Submit your question for Disease Management Q&A to info@hin.com.

3. HealthSounds Podcast: Integrating Health Coaching Into a Comprehensive Health Management Effort

Dr. Susan Butterworth, director of health services at Oregon Health & Science University, describes how to recognize when a patient is ready for self-management, help patients prepare for coaching and the elements of motivational interviewing training, certification, requirements and benefits. Roger Reed, executive vice president for marketing operations at Gordian Health Solutions, describes the quality checks built into his organization's coaching initiatives, the immediacy of cash incentives in effecting behavior change, and the value of the "accountability factor" in health coaching. Dr. Butterworth and Mr. Reed presented at our audio conference, Integrating Health Coaching Into a Comprehensive Health Management Effort.

To listen to this complimentary HIN podcast, please visit:

4. Exercise Helps Repair Muscle Damage in Heart Failure Patients

Exercise increased the growth of new muscle cells and blood vessels in the weakened muscles of people with heart failure, according to two studies reported at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2007.

“If you have heart failure, exercise training can improve your health status, increase your ability to exercise and reverse patterns of muscle damage that are common in heart failure,” said Axel Linke, M.D., assistant professor of medicine at the University of Leipzig, Germany, and a co-author on both studies.

Researchers investigated whether exercise training could activate progenitor cells, a pool of immature cells in skeletal muscle that can divide into various mature cells as needed for muscle repair. Compared with healthy people, those with heart failure have about a 50 percent reduction in the number of progenitor cells in their muscles.

To learn more about this report's findings, please visit:

5. Survey of the Month: MRSA Education and Prevention

Complete our survey on MRSA education and prevention and you'll get a free executive summary of the compiled results.

To participate in this survey and receive its results, please visit:

6. Health Coaching Goes High Tech with Virtual Partnership

Population health management experts know that a live support network is key to achieving lasting behavior change. With access to expert dieticians, nurses, exercise physiologists and health educators, enrollees are better equipped to achieve a healthier lifestyle. And with a hefty dose of advanced information technology, employers should know that expert attention is available for just pennies per employee per day — with a return on investment that far outweighs the cost.

To download this complimentary white paper, please visit:
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