Optima Health Addresses Food Security in Social Determinants of Health Efforts - IMAT Solutions
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18 Sep Optima Health Addresses Food Security in Social Determinants of Health Efforts

As we have highlighted before, many payers are addressing social determinants of health (SDOH) by addressing some of the more human elements, which include housing to having local field teams working on the ground with patients.

Optima Health is taking this concept one-step-further by launching a new program that lowers financial barriers to healthy food options, and increases overall food security.

Much of this effort is taking place in the state of Virginia, where the percentage of citizens facing food insecurity between 2015 and 2018 hovered around 9.5 to 10.1 percent.

To address this challenge, Optima is collaborating with Solutran’s Healthy Savings program, and have developed a plan to lower the healthy food cost barrier for Medicaid beneficiaries across the state and improve health conditions overall.

When the state sends Optima Health’s monthly Medicaid enrollment file, the payer immediately mails a discount card to new members with an explanation of the Healthy Savings program. The payer is also launching a marketing program to help with patient adoption of this program.

With SDOH encompassing a wide-range of human elements, payers are taking some innovative approaches to reduce costs and enhance care. For example, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois is investing $1 million in “housing and wraparound support services for members of Chicago’s homeless community.”

In addition, California-based Health2047’s new health plan, Zing Health, will offer a Medicare Advantage plan that establishes a local field team that will be acutely aware of the members’ and providers’ environments.

As we have highlighted in our SDOH and payers blog post series, the right data management solutions can help payers to better align claims and clinical systems to inform and drive new SDOH and population health initiatives.

Leveraging Natural Language Processing (NLP), IMAT customers have been able to identify SDOH indicators that already exist within their data to better identify those at risk. From Provider Dashboards to Business Intelligence tools to longitudinal patient charts, IMAT’s Health Data Analytic capabilities can transform population health and risk management for payers.

To learn more about how payers can best harness their data for improved analytics, interoperability and outcomes, please click here.


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