At least two Aetna executives involved with the CarePass platform have quietly left the company this summer, making it increasingly apparent that CarePass is either undergoing a major leadership change or, more likely, being quietly shelved.
According to her LinkedIn and Twitter accounts, Martha Wofford, former Vice President and Head of Consumer Products, left the company in June. Wofford's primary responsibility at Aetna was the CarePass platform, and her departure comes at a time when rumors are swirling about the possible discontinuation of the consumer-facing platform. Dan Conroy, Head of Business Development for the CarePass platform, also left the company in July and is currently the VP of Business Development at a company called Surgical Care Affiliates.
As of now, CarePass is still up and running and accepting registrations for new users, although the normally active CarePass Twitter account has not tweeted since June -- the month of Wofford's departure. MobiHealthNews has reached out to Aetna for comment and will update this story if we hear back.
CarePass is a mobile and online platform that aggregates data from different health and wellness apps to create a unified experience for users -- Aetna customers and non-Aetna customers alike. It launched for developers in 2012 and for consumers in 2013, inspiring similar offerings like Kaiser Permanente's Interchange platform and Cigna's GoYou Marketplace.
Though it started out with movement tracking apps and devices, at the start of 2014 the platform moved into medication tracking with Johnson & Johnson's Care4Today app and mood and stress tracking with MeQuilibrium.
Conroy spoke about CarePass at the HxRefactored conference in Brooklyn, New York in May, just a few months prior to his departure. At the time, he shared that the CarePass team was planning to spend the summer running a pilot for an employer-focused version of the consumer app.
"It’s the same underlying platform, same back end, same data types, basically the same user experience,” he said at the time. “But if you’re an employee at, say, Bank of America, when we roll CarePass out, for them what they would be able to do is put that data to work. Because CarePass is able to connect these different data types, we’ll now be able to reward you for taking healthy actions, without forcing you to use a [particular] tool. As long as it’s connected to CarePass we can align those incentives.”
Ever since Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini laid out the insurer's business priorities at his HIMSS keynote in February, the company has been doing some internal shuffling. We noted at the time the oddity of Bertolini omitting CarePass, up until then a mainstay of Aetna presentations at industry events, from his talk. Shortly after that, the company quietly shuttered InvolveCare, an app for caregivers that had just launched the previous year. The following month saw the quiet (but widely expected) departure of iTriage founders Pete Hudson and Wayne Guerra from Aetna.
On the other hand, the company also launched a new mobile health offering this year: NeoCare, a startup aimed at creating tablet applications to improve the experience of parents with babies in the neonatal intensive care unit of a hospital.
CarePass is something of a pioneer for payer forays into consumer health. If it is, in fact, revealed to be a bust, it could have a large ripple effect on other payers' mobile and digital health strategies in the future.