Members

Health & Wellness

At Health Choice Generations (HMO D-SNP), your health is our priority.

Did you know Health Choice Generations has a member rewards program? It is called Healthy Rewards and it encourages members to get healthy and stay healthy.

Eligible members can earn rewards by completing healthy activities such as an annual wellness visit with your primary care provider. You can get rewarded with a gift card for completing important health care activities such as:

    • Annual wellness exams
    • Breast cancer screenings
  • Colon cancer screenings

Visit our Healthy Rewards page to learn more!

Have you completed your Health Risk Assessment (HRA)?

Health Choice cares about you. We want to make sure all your health care needs are met.  Please take a few minutes to print and complete the Health Risk Assessment linked below.  This information is used to better understand what health care needs you may have and how we can help you stay healthy.

Health Risk Assessment
Evaluación de riesgos para la salud

Once completed, please mail to:
Health Choice Generations
410 N. 44th Street, Suite 900
Phoenix, AZ 85008

If you prefer to complete the Health Risk Assessment on the phone with one of our Care Managers, please call 1-800-656-8991, TTY 711, Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. and ask to speak with an HRA Nurse.

Care Management and Disease Management 

Health Choice has a staff of nurses and health care professionals who may be assigned to help you and/or a family member get the health care you need. Our staff works closely with you and your health care team.  This can include your primary care provider, specialist, and, behavioral health team. This is a service that we offer to help you better understand your health condition, medication, or any other services you may need to promote healthy living.

You may be eligible for Care Management or Disease Management programs if you:

  • Have a health condition like: asthma, coronary artery disease, congestive heart failure, COPD, diabetes, hepatitis C, HIV, high blood pressure, or COVID-19
  • Have a high-risk pregnancy
  • Are getting a transplant
  • Use the emergency department or hospital frequently
  • Were readmitted to a hospital less than 30 days after a discharge
  • Use a high dosage of pain medicines or anxiety medicines for more than 90 days
  • Have warning signs of a potential medication overdose. Information on opioid overdose prevention from the CDC can be found here.
  • Have an opioid use disorder
  • Are transferring between different care settings. This can include discharges from the Arizona State Hospital or release from jail or prison.
  • Have special health care needs
  • Made multiple grievances or complaints and need help getting the right care
  • Have been referred to us by someone on your care team

How to use these services:

Members in Care Management and Disease Management Programs have an assigned Care Manager. The Care Manager may call you to discuss your needs, review your records, and coordinate with your health care team to help you get the care, educational information, and resources you need. The Care Manager will work with you to develop a care plan with interventions and goals that address your needs. 

How to Opt-In or Opt-Out of these services:

Please call our Member Services Line at 1-800-656-8991 if you have questions. Our representatives can help you:

  • Request our Care Management or Disease Management Programs
  • Opt-Out of our Care and Disease Management Programs. You have the right to opt-out at any time.

Here are some Health & Wellness tips.

Stay healthy this flu season. Get your flu shot today!

As flu season ramps up, it is more important than ever to get a flu shot and to understand how getting a flu shot reduces your chances of getting the flu.

What is the flu?

The flu is a contagious illness caused by the flu virus that can lead to serious illness, hospitalization, or even death.  The flu happens every year and is more common in the fall and winter in the U.S.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone 6 months and older get vaccinated yearly. The shot is especially important for babies, pregnant women, and the elderly.

Who Can Get the Flu?

People of all ages can get the flu, from babies and young adults to the elderly. You are more likely to get the flu if you have a chronic health condition.

Where Can I Get Vaccinated?

  • Doctor offices and clinics
  • Your local health departments
  • Pharmacies (including most supermarket pharmacies)
  • Urgent care clinics

Even after having the flu shot, make sure to stay healthy, and protect yourself.

  • Wash your hands often
  • Avoid close contact with sick people
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you sneeze or cough

We are here to help. If you have questions, please call Member Services at 1-800-656-8991, TTY 711, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., 7 days a week. 

Now is the right time for an annual wellness visit!

Your annual wellness visit is an important part of staying healthy.

Your appointment will include a review of:

  • Your health history
  • Your medications
  • Improving or maintaining your physical and mental health
  • Your physical activity and exercise
  • Your exam may also include things like:
    • Height, weight, body mass index (BMI)
    • Blood pressure screening
    • Cancer screenings

If you have special conditions like diabetes, your provider will check to see if you need updated tests and screenings like A1C blood tests, kidney monitoring, and a vision check.

We are here to help. If you have questions, please call Member Services at 1-800-656-8991, TTY 711, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., 7 days a week. 

Breast Cancer Awareness

If you are a woman, you could be one of the one in eight women in the U.S. to get breast cancer.

There are many risk factors for breast cancer, but really the most common risk is simply being a woman. Fortunately, current treatment can be very effective. In fact, the 5-year survival rate can be as high as 98% of breast cancer is detected early and confined to the breast.

The American Cancer Society recommends the following methods to help detect breast cancer early:

  • Women age 50 and older should have a mammogram every year and should continue to do so for as long as they are in good health.
  • Women in their 20s and 30s should have a clinical breast exam as part of a regular health exam by a health professional preferably every 3 years. Starting at age 40, women should have a clinical breast exam by a health professional every year.
  • Breast self-examination is an option for women starting in their 20s. Women should learn about the benefits and limitations of breast self-examination. Women should report any breast changes to their health professional right away.

Learn more about what you can do to help detect breast cancer early. For more information about breast cancer and the importance of mammography, visit these websites

What is Colorectal Cancer Screening?

A screening test is used to look for a disease when a person doesn’t have symptoms. (When a person has symptoms, diagnostic tests are used to find out the cause of the symptoms.)

Colorectal cancer almost always develops from precancerous polyps. Precancerous polyps are abnormal growths that are found in the colon or rectum. Screening tests can find these. If abnormal growths are found, they can be removed before they turn into cancer. Screening tests can also find colorectal cancer early. If found early, treatment is the best course of action.

Fast Facts

  • If you are age 50 to 75 years old, you should get screened for colorectal cancer.
  • The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends screening beginning at age 50. Some groups recommend starting earlier, at age 45.
  • About 90% of new cases of colorectal cancer happen in people who are 50 or older.
  • Millions of people in the United States are not getting screened as recommended. They are missing the chance to prevent colorectal cancer or find it early. Treatment often leads to a cure.
  • If you think you may be at an increased risk for colorectal cancer, learn your family health history. Talk to your doctor about your history and if you should begin screening before age 50.

Source: cdc.gov

Diabetes

Did you know diabetes is one of the leading causes of disability and death in the U.S.?

According to the American Diabetes Association, nearly 1.6 million Americans have it. Type 1 diabetes is when the body doesn’t produce insulin. It occurs at every age, in people of every race, and every shape and size. Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes and occurs when your body doesn’t use insulin properly. . Diabetes affects heart health and can also cause blindness, kidney failure, and amputations of feet and/or legs not related to accidents or injury.

Symptoms of diabetes include:

  • Fatigue
  • Frequent urination
  • Increased thirst or hunger
  • Weight loss
  • Blurred vision
  • Slowed healing of wounds

Fortunately, there are ways to prevent diabetes, or if you already have diabetes, to manage it so that you can lead a healthier life.

Ways to prevent diabetes include:

  • Losing weight
  • Eating a healthy diet
  • Controlling your blood pressure and cholesterol
  • Quitting smoking if you are a smoker

If you have an increased risk of diabetes due to family history or if you’re overweight, you need to make diabetes prevention a priority. Fortunately, this can be as simple as eating healthier foods, and it’s easier than you think.

Take the first steps towards a healthier diet by adding more fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and leaner meats to your shopping list and try and include them in most meals. In time it’ll get easier to eat more healthy foods, plus eating healthy foods will help you lose weight.

For more information about diabetes, visit these websites:

High Blood Pressure

Do you know why high blood pressure is also called “The Silent Killer”?

Approximately one in three people in the U.S. have high blood pressure (or hypertension), which can lead to stroke, heart attack, or kidney disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People with high blood pressure may have no symptoms. You may feel fine and not be aware that high blood pressure is damaging your arteries, heart, and other organs. This is why high blood pressure is sometimes called “The Silent Killer.”

Because high blood pressure is such a dangerous condition, it’s vital to follow your physician’s course of treatment. This can include a variety of prescriptions and over the counter products, but also requires special attention to diet, sleeping habits, and of course, exercise.

The key is consistency. Get a plan from a doctor to manage your blood pressure, and stick to it.

In addition to your doctor’s recommendations, here are some ways to lower your blood pressure:

  • Eat healthy foods
  • Eat foods that are low in sodium
  • Stay active
  • Lose weight

For more information about high blood pressure, visit these websites:

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a chronic inflammatory lung disease that causes obstructed airflow from the lungs.

Symptoms include:

  • Breathing difficulty
  • Cough
  • Mucus (sputum) production
  • Wheezing

It’s caused by long-term exposure to irritating gases or particulate matter, most often from cigarette smoke. People with COPD are at increased risk of developing heart disease, lung cancer and a variety of other conditions.

Here are some steps you can take to help prevent complications associated with COPD:

Quit smoking to help reduce your risk of heart disease and lung cancer.
Get an annual flu vaccination and regular vaccination against pneumococcal pneumonia to reduce your risk of or prevent some infections.
Talk to your doctor if you feel sad or helpless or think that you may be experiencing depression.

If you’re a longtime smoker, these simple statements may not seem so simple, especially if you’ve tried quitting — once, twice or many times before. But keep trying to quit. It’s critical to find a tobacco cessation program that can help you quit for good. It’s your best chance for reducing damage to your lungs.

Tobacco Cessation

Want to Quit Smoking or Kick the Tobacco Habit?

If you smoke or use tobacco, one of the best ways to get healthy is to quit. Tobacco use puts you at high risk for cancer, heart attack, stroke and even sexual problems. The risks are even greater if you have diabetes, you are overweight, or you have other health problems. A pregnant mom who smokes is also risking the health of her unborn baby.

Studies show drugs, stop-smoking aids, counseling, support and habit changes can help you quit.

Take that First Step:

  • Decide to stop smoking and set a date.
  • Get support from family and friends.
  • Quit with a friend or partner.
  • Get help from your doctor.

Have you tried to quit smoking in the past but could not? The State of Arizona has a free helpline dedicated to helping you in living a tobacco free lifestyle.

The Arizona Smokers Helpline (ASHLine) is staffed with certified tobacco cessation counselors who can coach you through the quitting process. These coaches are trained professionals who will help customize and follow a quit plan. They act as your personal trainer to help you quit smoking. They also help you set goals, work toward a quit date and provide support.

As a Health Choice Generations member, you have FREE smoking cessation products available to you. The Arizona Smokers Helpline (ASHLine) will work with your provider to determine which products will work best for you.

For more information, visit:

Take our interactive Smoking Habits Quiz for a profile of your nicotine dependence and some ideas about how to tame your cravings as you become a non-smoker.

Printable version, to complete on paper and share with your providers:
Online Smoking Habits Quiz

Source: Heatherton TF, Kozlowski LT, Frecker RC, Fagerstrom KO (1991). The Fagerstrom Test for Nicotine Dependence: a revision of the Fagerstrom Tolerance Questionnaire. Br J Addict 86:1119-27.

For more information on quitting tobacco, go to Tobacco Free Arizona at:
www.azdhs.gov/prevention/tobacco-chronic-disease/tobacco-free-az/index.php.

Tobacco Free Arizona is a program to help Arizonans know the risks of tobacco use and resources for quitting.

Get Moving!

Physical activity is important for people of all ages. Being active can help you feel better physically and mentally, sleep better, and function better in your day to day life. You don’t have to join a gym to exercise. Making time to move more throughout your day can make a big difference. Small changes add up.

This interactive Get Moving Quiz can help you learn if you are moving enough to stay healthy at your age. Take it for personalized recommendations.

Printable version, to complete on paper and share with your providers:
Get Moving Quiz 18-64YO
Get Moving Quiz 65+

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Department of Health and Human Services. https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/age-chart.html

Additional Self-Management Tools:

Use this Physical Activity Diary to keep track of how much you move.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
https://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/pdf/physical_activity_diary_cdc.pdf

The Move Your Way Activity Planner for Adults helps adults build a personalized weekly activity plan and offers tips for fitting activity into their daily routines.
https://health.gov/MoveYourWay/Activity-Planner/

Sources:

Eat Healthy

Eating foods full of nutrients fuels your body and mind. According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015-2020, a healthy eating plan:

  • Emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products
  • Includes lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts
  • Is low in saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, salt (sodium), and added sugars
  • Stays within your daily calorie needs

Self-Management Tools:

The Start Simple app from the US Department of Agriculture can help you to plan your meals, pick simple daily food goals and see real-time progress. Try the app!

https://www.choosemyplate.gov/startsimpleapp

Choosing healthy drinks is one way to quickly improve your eating habits. Sugary drinks like soda and sweet tea can add many calories to your day if you choose them often. To work on making a change, start by tracking what you drink each day. The Drink Tracking Log can help. Simply print out the log and mark off the beverages you drink during the day. You can repeat this over several days or a week for a full picture of your habits. Consider sharing the log with your Primary Care Provider or Care Manager for help in setting goals.

Printable version, to complete on paper and share with your providers:
Drink Tracking Log

Once you complete the worksheet, try setting a goal for change. Here is an example.

What You Drink Now: You drink four drinks from the “Choose more often” column and four drinks from the “Choose less often” column each day.
Goal: Replace two of your “Choose less often” drinks with something from the “Choose more often” column.

For more information and tools on healthy eating, visit these sites:

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly the American Dietetic Association). Provides a variety of nutrition-related educational materials. http://www.eatright.org

American Diabetes Association. An organization with the aim of leading the fight against the deadly consequences of diabetes and fighting for those affected by diabetes. http://www.diabetes.org

Foodsafety.gov. Provides access to government resources relating to food safety and nutrition. http://www.foodsafety.gov

App Source: US Department of Agriculture and Health & Human Services, Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015-2020. https://www.dietaryguidelines.gov/current-dietary-guidelines/2015-2020-dietary-guidelines

Worksheet Source: Insel/Roth, Connect Core Concepts in Health, Sixteenth Edition © 2020 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. Chapter 13.

Healthy Weight

Healthy weight means that your weight is in a range that is considered healthy for your age and height. Doctors use a measurement called a body mass index (BMI) to help determine if your weight is healthy. You can use this BMI Table from the National Institutes of Health to learn your BMI.

To use this table, find the your height on the left side of the table. Move across to your weight in pounds. The number at the top of the column is the BMI at that height and weight. Pounds have been rounded off.

Source: National Institute of Health, https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/lose_wt/BMI/bmi_tbl.pdf
Or, use our BMI Calculator for Adults:

If you need assistance finding a Primary Care Provider to help you with your weight or any other health care need, please call the Health Choice Customer Service Line at 1-800-322-8670.

Underweight

Weighing less than you should can be caused by some serious diseases or illnesses. If you are losing weight without trying, you should see your doctor for a check-up. You should also see your doctor if you think you may have an eating disorder (see eating disorder information below). People who weigh less than they should may feel more tired than usual. They may be more likely to get serious infections and may take longer to heal if they are hurt or have surgery. Not having enough nutrients can affect your body in many ways.

What can you do if you are underweight?

  • Add healthy calories. Instead of eating junk food, choose foods that are rich in nutrients. This helps ensure that your body has as much nourishment as possible. Foods with healthy calories include nuts, seeds, whole grains, beans, fruits and vegetables. Try almonds, sunflower seeds, fruit, or whole-grain toast.
  • Snack. Enjoy snacks with protein, carbohydrates and healthy fats. Healthy snacks could be: crackers and hummus, fruit and peanut butter, or avocado on toast.
  • Eat small meals. If you have a low appetite, it can be hard to eat a full meal. Eating small meals throughout the day can help.
  • Build muscle. Strength-training can build muscle and help you gain healthy weight. Yoga and weightlifting are exercises that can help to build muscle. Talk to your doctor about your exercise plans before beginning any new exercise programs.

Overweight

Weighing more than you should can put you at risk for health problems. When you are overweight, you are more likely to have health problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, sleep apnea, heart disease, stroke, and cancer.

What can you do if you are overweight?

  • Talk with your doctor about your weight. Your doctor may want to check some labs. It may be difficult to lose weight, and your doctor can help you find a plan that works for you.
  • Small changes can help. Try to eat more healthy foods and avoid “junk” foods. “Junk” foods such as potato chips, candy, fried foods, and soda have calories but not many vitamins and other nutrients that our bodies need. Eat more of the foods that have plenty of good nutrients and vitamins. Green leafy vegetables, lean proteins such as beans, chicken and fish, as well as fruits are all good for you. Drink water or unsweetened tea instead of sugary drinks.
  • Try to get into a habit of exercising. Start with walking, biking, or swimming 5 minutes a day and add a minute or two every day or every week. Make a goal of walking 30 minutes per day. Exercise with a friend. It will be more fun, and you will be more likely to stick with it.
  • See your behavioral health provider to help with stress, depression, anxiety, or other behavioral health conditions as these can make it harder to lose weight.
  • Take a Healthy Living (CDSMP) workshop to learn how to improve your health. For information, talk to your case manager or go to: www.azlwi.org
  • Ask your case manager about community resources near you. Some communities may offer walking programs, discount gym memberships, cooking classes, access to healthy foods, yoga classes and more.

Eating Disorders

There are three main types of eating disorders: anorexia nervosa, binge eating disorder and bulimia nervosa.

  • Anorexia nervosa. People with this disorder may have an intense fear of weight gain, even when they are underweight. They may diet or exercise too much or use other ways to lose weight.
  • Binge eating disorder. People with this disorder will eat large amounts of food in a short amount of time. Food may be eaten even if the person is not hungry or feels full.
  • Bulimia nervosa. A person with bulimia binge eats like those with binge eating disorder. In addition, they use different ways, such as vomiting or laxatives, to try and prevent weight gain. Many people with bulimia also have anorexia nervosa.

More Information:

Managing Stress

Stress is anything that activates or turns on your nervous system. Activation can be thought of as pressing the gas pedal of a car. Our heart rate, blood pressure and breathing increase; our pupils dilate; our digestion slows; blood moves to our arms and legs for quicker movement. Stress can help us respond to an emergency, like moving our car away from another one to avoid an accident. However, long-term stress is harmful and causes damage to our brain and body. Changes (like a divorce, moving to a new home, having a baby, or a change in job responsibilities) can lead to stress. The changes brought on by the Coronavirus Pandemic are another example of possible stressors.

For an inventory of your stress level, take the interactive Life Change Quiz here.

Printable version, to complete on paper and share with your providers:
Life Changes Quiz

Source: T.H.Holmes and T.H. Rahe. “The Social Readjustment Rating Scale,” Journal of Psychosomatic Research. 11:213, 1967.
Stress can be managed to decrease its effects on your health.

Practices that can be used to manage stress include:

  • Deep breathing
  • Meditating
  • Laughing
  • Smilin
  • Eating healthy foods to support a gut microbiome
  • Yoga, especially open chest pose
  • Orientation – allowing your eyes to wander and noticing what draws your attention
  • Singin
  • Hummin
  • Dancin
  • Getting a massag
  • Connecting with friends and family, in person or over the phone or interne
  • Psychotherapy

Depression

Everyone feels sad or down from time to time. Depression is more than sadness. It is a mood disorder that can cause problems in your day to day life, low energy, tearfulness, sleeping problems, changes in your appetite, and sometimes thoughts of suicide. Many people experience depression, and there is help available. People with depression can feel better and live full, active lives.

This interactive quiz can screen for possible depression symptoms.

Printable version, to complete on paper and share with your providers:
Online Depression Quiz

Source: Patient Health Questionnaire – 9 (PHQ-9), developed by Drs. R.L. Spitzer, J.B. Williams, K. Kroenke and colleagues with an educational grant from Pfizer, Inc. No permission required to reproduce, translate, display or distribute.

If you are feeling depressed, we still recommend a complete assessment by a behavioral health professional. Health Choice can connect you with a behavioral health professional for a complete assessment and treatment recommendations. Please call us at 1-800-322-8670.

If you are having an emotional crisis or know someone who is at risk of physical harm, hurting themselves or someone else, call the Behavioral Health Crisis Hotline immediately.

Here are some warning signs:

  • Hopelessness; feeling like there’s no way out
  • Anxiety, agitation, sleeplessness, mood swings
  • Feeling like there is no reason to live
  • Rage or anger
  • Engaging in risky activities without thinking
  • Increasing alcohol or drug use
  • Withdrawing from family and friends

Call 911 if:

  • You are concerned about harming or hurting yourself or someone else
  • Thinking about killing yourself, or looking for ways to take your life
  • Talking about death, dying or suicide
  • You or someone else has overdosed

You are able to get crisis services, even if you are not Title 19/21 eligible (i.e., not eligible for AHCCCS) or determined to have a Serious Mental Illness. The Crisis Line connects people in crisis and their families and friends with information and qualified caring health care professionals. The Crisis Line is completely confidential and is open to anyone who needs help regardless of insurance.

Crisis Services include:

  • Crisis Intervention Phone services, including a toll free number, available 24 hours per day, 7 days a week
  • Mobile Crisis Intervention services, available 24 hours per day, 7 days a week
  • 24-hour Crisis Observation/Stabilization services, including detoxification services; and as funding allows, up to 72 hours of additional crisis stabilization; and substance use-related crisis services, including follow-up services for stabilization.

Avoiding At-Risk Drinking

Not sure if alcohol is a problem for you? This quiz can help you decide whether you could benefit from an assessment by a behavioral health professional.

Printable version, to complete on paper and share with your providers:
Alcohol Use Problem Screener

Source: CAGE Questionnaire. JA Ewing, “Detecting Alcoholism: The CAGE Questionaire.” JAMA 252: 1905‐1907, 1984.

 


Last Updated: 10/07/2020

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