BALTIMORE (Jan. 08, 2018) – CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield (CareFirst), the mid-Atlantic region’s largest health insurer, has finalized a contract with Sharecare, a leading digital health and wellness company founded by digital health pioneer Jeff Arnold (founder of WebMD) and Dr. Mehmet Oz (leading cardiothoracic surgeon and host of “The Dr. Oz Show”), to provide CareFirst members with comprehensive wellness and disease management services, beginning in 2019. CareFirst – through its Healthworx program focusing on working with innovative companies in the health space – has also made a strategic investment in Sharecare, the terms of which were not disclosed.
As part of this new four-year relationship, CareFirst members will have access to a personalized mobile and web-based platform that will help them better understand their health and provide timely and actionable steps to improve it. Sharecare will combine its core platform with customized elements that integrate with CareFirst’s clinical programs including the company’s Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) program. Sharecare, through its acquisition of Healthways Population Health, has been providing services and technology since 2010 that are an integral part of the CareFirst PCMH program.
Sharecare’s personalized platform will improve the ability of CareFirst’s wellness and disease management programs to connect with members via smartphones, wearable devices and other web-based technology, capturing important information and dynamic data to coordinate care. Members will also be able to access tools and personal support, tied to financial incentives and other benefits, that guide and encourage them to be more engaged in their health and well-being. Additional services provided to CareFirst members will include digital health assessments, lifestyle and disease management coaching, tobacco cessation programs, health challenges and tools to help manage weight, nutrition, physical activity and more, yielding a robust combination of wellness disease management features and functionality uniquely available to CareFirst members and employer groups.
“We are committed to providing our members with the tools and information they need to take an active role in improving their health,” said CareFirst President and CEO Chet Burrell. “Our wellness and disease management program is designed to help identify our members who are at-risk for or living with a serious health condition and assist them in adopting healthier lifestyles through the better management of those conditions. When aligned with our clinical programs and capabilities, Sharecare’s technology, tools and expertise will enable us to fully understand our members’ behaviors, provide them with the information they need to make informed health care decisions and deliver meaningful incentives that motivate them to make changes.”
“We are honored for the opportunity to expand on our CareFirst partnership with this new service agreement and investment, both of which underscore our shared vision to improve the health of a diverse population by engaging the member, and leveraging data-driven insights to provide people with real-time access to the tools and resources they need to best manage their health,” said Jeff Arnold, Chairman and CEO of Sharecare. “CareFirst continues to transform the delivery of healthcare to its members through its integrated model that enables care coordination between all key stakeholders; and our comprehensive digital platform and ability to engage people in their health – no matter where they are in their health journey – will serve to enhance that model, ultimately resulting in better outcomes and reduced costs.”
CareFirst’s agreement with Sharecare is the result of a Request for Proposal (RFP) process and will consolidate the number of vendors providing wellness and disease management services to CareFirst members. The partnership will improve CareFirst’s ability to meet customers’ wellness needs in an increasingly mobile world, while also bolstering other products and programs the company offers.
About CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield
In its 80th year of service, CareFirst, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, is a not-for-profit health care company which, through its affiliates and subsidiaries, offers a comprehensive portfolio of health insurance products and administrative services to 3.2 million individuals and groups in Maryland, the District of Columbia and Northern Virginia. In 2016, CareFirst invested nearly $44 million to improve overall health, and increase the accessibility, affordability, safety and quality of health care throughout its market areas. To learn more about CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, visit our website at www.carefirst.com or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram or Google+.
Sharecare is the digital health company that helps people manage all their health in one place. The Sharecare platform provides each person – no matter where they are in their health journey – with a comprehensive and personalized health profile, where they can dynamically and easily connect to the information, evidence-based programs and health professionals they need to live their healthiest, happiest and most productive life. In addition to providing individual consumers with direct access to award-winning and innovative frictionless technologies, scientifically validated clinical protocols and best-in-class coaching tools, Sharecare also helps providers, employers and health plans effectively scale outcomes-based health and wellness solutions across their entire populations. To learn more, visit their website.