Starting in 2020, agents leveraged Humana’s Member Care Assessment to survey newly enrolled members to ask questions about their whole health, including social needs, to uncover any existing barriers that may be affecting their health.
MarketPoint agent Denise Westerfield explained that she sees her role in supporting members as a calling, so when the Member Care Assessment gave her the opportunity to help more people, she was all in.
Although members aren’t under any obligation to participate in the assessment, Denise said she makes sure her clients know that it helps her to help them. Many plan benefits can support social and behavioral needs, and oftentimes, members aren’t aware they are part of their plans and at no additional cost.
In addition to a new member kit, which includes safety masks and helpful information, she sends each member a note explaining the plan’s features. Denise then calls to follow up and connects members with county human services resources if needed.
“I ask if they feel lonely and isolated from those around them, because a lot of people are dealing with that. I tell them about behavioral health tele therapy that’s included in every plan. They can establish a relationship with a therapist from their home, and have that follow up and other scheduled calls. It gives them someone to talk to.”
Early outcomes from the social determinant screenings data of Humana’s Member Care Assessment show that several thousand members are connecting with their Humana sales associates each month. Since launching in October 2020 through March of 2021, sales agents have submitted approximately 228,000 assessments in which 97,000 members report having barriers to health.
Of those, 70,500 identified gaps in basic needs (i.e. food, housing, medical care, heating, financial insecurity) and 141,100 identified as struggling with loneliness and social isolation.
And, as part of the Member Care Assessment, to ensure members were taking their medications when prescribed, Humana Pharmacy conducted personalized outbound call and text campaigns with members who had said they had trouble accessing prescriptions.
“This assessment has been really positive; we’re reaching into our members’ lives to help them and provide the assistance they need,” Westerfield said. “You’d be shocked at how many were silently dealing with depression and loneliness, and how they’re now willing to share that so we can help.”
“I feel like it’s given us more opportunity to build stronger relationships with our members because they’re more comfortable sharing what’s going on in their daily lives,” she said. “Even opening up about their utilities; I’ve been connecting people to county resources to see if they qualify for assistance to get the necessary support.”
“We’re offering members so much more than we have before. Whether it’s through their health plan benefits, community resources, and other Humana programs – like our Friendship Line and behavioral health teletherapy – we’re ensuring that our members are getting the support they need to achieve their best health.”