The Circle program combines medical care for Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis with a suite of additional services, including nutrition, mental health, mind–body techniques, and stress management. We are calling it the Circle program because the goal is to create a new model of IBD care that revolves around patients—their needs and preferences, their education.
We encourage new patients with active disease and our current patients with a history of hospitalizations and high utilization of health care services to consider participating in the Circle program.
We expect the program to increase the time that IBD conditions are brought into remission, to lengthen the time patients stay in remission and to decrease the use of steroid therapy. We also anticipate fewer emergency department visits and fewer hospitalizations. This all translates into a healthier you and a better quality of life.
We believe the Circle program will help transform IBD care, so it is focused on patients, less costly, and more effective in managing IBD.
Here are some of the core elements of the Circle program:
- Individualized programs. At enrollment, each patient will be evaluated by the Center’s team, which will include a health care provider (a physician, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner), social worker, stress management consultant, nutritionist, and health coach. Members of the team will meet regularly to review the cases of individual patients and make any necessary adjustments in their care plans.
- Virtual visits. Patients can visit and check-in with providers using telehealth sessions.
- Patient education and engagement. In addition to providing patients and their families with in-depth information, the Circle program includes instruction on nutrition, mind–body techniques and “mini-courses” on side effects and management of flares.
- Patient partnership and mentors. The education programs are designed to foster the development of patient teams and partnerships. Graduates of the patient education programs are encouraged to volunteer as mentors to new patients.
- Patient management tools. An app, a website, informational videos, and printed materials are used to reinforce the educational programs.
- Behavioral health services. A psychiatrist, health psychologist, and health coach provide behavioral health services. Locating these services at the Center eliminates one of the chief barriers to people getting the behavioral health services they need.
- Health coaching. Coaching by the Center’s health psychologist includes face-to-face meetings, proactive emails and text messages, telephone calls, and video conferencing. The health coach, supervised by the psychologist, serves as health educator, advocate, and social worker.
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