Tuesday, 16 June 2020
Department of Health
Around 30-40% of people in Ireland have high blood pressure and the chances of having high blood pressure increase as a person gets older. The Chronic Disease Management (CDM) Programme is a key element of the 2019 Agreement on GP Contractual Reform and Service Development. This programme will see GPs identifying patients with one or more of four chronic conditions – Type 2 Diabetes, Asthma, COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) and Cardiovascular disease – to participate in the programme.
When fully implemented, it is planned that over 400,000 patients with an existing diagnosis of one of the specified conditions, those who are assessed by their GP on an opportunistic case finding basis, as well as those identified as high risk, will benefit under the programme.
The roll-out of the CDM programme commenced earlier this year to medical card and GP visit card holders aged 75 years and older, with additional groups of patients to be identified in the next three years. Full roll-out is expected in 2023. This programme is a structured approach to the management of chronic diseases in the context of general practice designed to help patients to manage their conditions and delivering better quality of life and a reduced reliance on hospital attendance.
Patients on the structured CDM programme will receive two annual visits with their GP and two visits with the practice nurse while those patients on the high-risk preventative programme will receive 1 GP visit and 1 practice nurse visit a year. The annual scheduled reviews include patient education, preventative care, past medical history, physical examination (including blood pressure) and scheduled investigations.
Patients holding a medical or a GP visit card can receive check-ups for hypertension without charges, and the costs associated with such check-ups would be covered by the capitation payments made to GPs on the patients’ behalf. There are no plans at present to introduce free check-ups for hypertension to the general population and so there are no costings available for the introduction of this measure.