Sense Health brings its texting-based adherence program to more Medicaid members in NYC

By Jonah Comstock
Share

Sense Health, a texting software company focused on Medicaid care managers, has signed a deal with Coordinated Behavioral Care’s (CBC) Health Home, a nonprofit that oversees more than 50 Medicaid care management agencies in New York City.

CBC will deploy Sense Health in 12 of its member agencies to start. The program has a potential reach of 1,500 new Medicaid beneficiaries. With Sense Health, care coordinators will gain access to a two-way text message communication service that includes motivational and reminder messages about appointments and prescriptions.

“It’s somewhat similar to a number of organizations we’ve worked with,” Sense Health CEO Stan Berkow told MobiHealthNews. “I’d say the scope is a lot larger, and that’s obviously very exciting and their interest in the technology is very exciting, but I would say the biggest difference structurally is how they sit on top of a number of different agencies and push it down, instead of us going agency by agency. As this has come together, we’ve been doing a number of upgrades to the product to support more complex orgaizational structures What’s cool is it allows us to view each agency as it’s own group, but bundle them together under CBC.”

Berkow estimates the deal will expand their number of agency clients by 25 percent. New York state is currently undergoing a $6.42 billion delivery system redesign, with the goal of decreasing avoidable hospitalization for the Medicaid population by 25 percent.

“Structurally some of the exciting things that are coming [in this space] are the shift in payment models and the focus on broader outcomes around administering readmissions,” Berkow said. “With respect to that new wave, certainly technology is a big area and there’s a lot of players in the space. There’s a lot of companies out there that do apps and all of those things. But we find in the Medicaid space, not every one has smartphones, so a text messaging-based program is an asset.”

In a pilot study of Sense Health last spring at Montefiore Medical Center in New York, 90 percent of patients said they were extremely interested in using the technology to keep tracking health plan goals and appointments, and over 90 percent of care managers said Sense Health made it "usually or almost always" easier to support their clients.