Cigna and Fresenius Medical Care North America will extend their national partnership through 2023 to improve outcomes and lower costs for patients with end-stage renal disease and kidney failure.
The latest agreement, announced on Monday, will allow the companies to continue to work on the value-based kidney care program under Cigna Collaborative Care.
The program engages with providers using incentives to help with better outcomes, affordability and patient satisfaction. The partnership began in 2017 and allows Cigna members to access Fresenius' 2,600 dialysis centers and home dialysis options to manage their health.
"Through this program, we have helped Cigna customers living with renal failure improve the quality of their health and lower their health costs," said Rajesh Davda, senior medical director at Cigna, in a news release. "We're pleased to expand it to reach even more of our customers across the country."
Fresenius credits some of the program's success to its relationship with InterWell Health, a network of nephrologists focused on better care, according David Pollack, president of Fresenius' Integrated Care Group.
CMS in July released its first value-based payment model to address health equity for those with end-stage renal disease and reduce disparities in home dialysis and kidney transplant rates among ESRD patients from disadvantaged communities.
The agency's proposed rule for 2022 would update payment rates, make changes to the ESRD Quality Incentive Program, and modify benchmarking and scoring methodology part of the ESRD Treatment Choices Model to encourage dialysis providers to work against systemic barriers.
Fresenius has also joined forces with other large insurers like Aetna and Human to work on value-based kidney care, which the organization stated has led to less unnecessary hospitalizations for those with kidney disease.
With this expansion, the goal is to coordinate and expand patient access so consumers can get the right care in the right setting, raising their satisfaction rates and boosting provider experiences.
"This expanded agreement reflects our commitment to fully supporting patients with kidney disease, creating a truly integrated approach that addresses the complex needs of this vulnerable population," Pollack said.