SOURCE: Krames StayWell

Krames StayWell

February 11, 2014 08:05 ET

Regence Text Messaging Pilot Positively Impacts Member Engagement

Members Make Positive Health Changes After Participating in Programs for Diabetes and Pregnancy

SALT LAKE CITY, UT--(Marketwired - Feb 11, 2014) - Simple text messages can make a big difference in members' health, according to the results of a pilot program conducted by Regence with plan participants who were managing either a pregnancy or diabetes. After participating in the program, 32% of pregnancy participants and 67% of diabetes participants reported the information they received helped them make positive changes in how they experienced or managed their condition.

Regence is an affiliation of health plans serving 2.2 million members of Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans in Idaho, Oregon, Washington and Utah. They collaborated with Krames StayWell, a health solutions company with expertise in developing population health management communications, using Krames StayWell Text Connection™ for both pilots. The Krames StayWell program delivers automated text messages for specific health conditions to members that opt in. The messages include health information and reminders, relevant to the member's condition.

"Providing our members with tools to better manage their health is a top priority for Regence," said Csaba Mera, M.D., deputy chief medical officer for Regence. "Motivating people to change their behaviors, make healthy choices, and access appropriate healthcare services in a timely manner is a challenging task. We applaud our members who chose to participate in this program and they've shown that simple changes can make a difference in their health and well-being."

The pilots were conducted to evaluate the feasibility and effectiveness of text messaging for improving members' engagement with their health and knowledge about their health conditions. An additional objective was to gauge experience and satisfaction with the intervention.

The pilot study focused on two conditions: pregnancy and diabetes. These were chosen because they are prevalent, costly and have the potential for long-term adverse health outcomes and early intervention has the potential to mitigate these risks. Additionally, Krames StayWell had an existing text messaging program for pregnancy, the StayWell StartWell™ Text Connection solution.

Key findings included:

  • The difference in pre- and post-intervention knowledge assessment scores among participants who completed both was statistically significant, indicating that text messages were associated with an increase in knowledge about diabetes.
  • Respondents reported that they knew more about their condition after receiving the texts messages -- nearly 60% for pregnancy and almost 67% for diabetes.
  • Participants indicated the texting programs helped them make positive behavioral changes -- almost 32% for pregnancy and 67% for diabetes.
  • Almost 90% of pregnant participants indicated that text messages were valuable and approximately 89% of the participants in the diabetes program indicated the same.

"Given that almost 90% of U.S. adults have mobile phones and 70% use them for text messaging, this is an effective and affordable way for our clients to reach their health care consumers," said Trent Sterling, CEO, Krames StayWell. "The Regence pilots have demonstrated the effectiveness of using this technology to improve engagement in managing health conditions."

Specific details on the pilots and additional findings can be found here.

About Regence affiliated companies
The Regence affiliated companies serve more than two million members through Regence BlueShield of Idaho, Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon, Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah and Regence BlueShield (selected counties in Washington). Each health plan is a nonprofit independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. The Regence affiliated companies are committed to improving the health of its members and communities and to transforming the health care system. For more information, please visit www.regence.com.

About Krames StayWell
Krames StayWell, a leading health engagement solutions company, provides a broad portfolio of solutions to help its clients achieve their acquisition and retention, population health management, and patient and consumer education goals. Leveraging extensive technology assets, advanced analytics, rich health content and robust, multi-channel deployment, Krames StayWell solutions reach consumers with the right message at the right time in the right format. Krames StayWell solutions touch more than 80 million people every year and are redefining engagement to drive positive consumer health decisions and behavior change. For more information, please visit www.kramesstaywell.com.