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Am J Manag Care. 2009 Nov;15(11):817-25.

Effectiveness of care coordination and health counseling in advancing illness.

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  • 1Care Support of America, Albany, NY 12208, USA.



To evaluate the Advanced Illness Coordinated Care Program (hereafter AICCP) for effects on health delivery among patients and caregivers, quality of life, advance planning, and health service utilization.


Prospective trial involving 532 patients and 185 caregivers. AICCP consisted of care coordination, health counseling, and education delivered in cooperation with physicians.


Patients with advanced disease and their caregivers were assigned to AICCP or usual care (UC). Data sources included self-report, medical record review, and health plan databases. Statistical analyses used t test, chi(2) test, regression analysis, and analysis of variance.


Compared with those in UC, AICCP participants had improved communication and care concerning symptoms (P = .02), support in understanding and coping with their illness (P = .01), advance planning (P <.001), support in managing family decision making (P = .002), and help in accessing spiritual support (P <.001). AICCP caregivers received more attention for emotional and spiritual needs (P = .02). AICCP participants were 2.23 times more likely to formulate an advance directive (P <.001) (5.5 months sooner [P <.001]) and were 1.26 times more likely to agree to a do-not-resuscitate or do-not-intubate order (P = .04). AICCP participants had on average 1.89 fewer inpatient admissions (P = .045). There was no difference in 1-year survival (P = .80).


AICCP improved communication and care delivery, advance planning, and do-not-resuscitate or do-not-intubate orders in a population at risk to use them. AICCP had fewer admissions. Coordination and health counseling seem matched for those coping with advancing illness.

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