NU Online News Service, June 10, 6:15 p.m. – The National Committee for Quality Assurance, Washington, has awarded full accreditation in disease management to American Healthways Inc., Nashville, Tenn.

American Healthways, a company that manages care for diabetes, congestive heart failure and other conditions, is the first company that has completed the NCQA’s new Disease Management Accreditation program.

The NCQA already has accreditation programs for health maintenance organizations and preferred provider organizations.

The nonprofit group is trying to encourage major medical plans to work with accredited disease management programs by relieving plans of some of the burden of verifying the quality of accredited programs.

So far, 22 disease management organizations have agreed to participate in the new accreditation program, the NCQA says.