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Colorado Access Partners With Welltok on COVID-19 Medicaid Outreach

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Health plan leveraged text to quickly distribute pandemic information

Colorado Access, a 501(c)4 nonprofit health plan that serves Health First Colorado (Colorado’s Medicaid Program) and Child Health Plan Plus (CHP+) populations throughout Colorado, recently teamed up with consumer activation solutions company Welltok to adapt its existing texting program and quickly distribute COVID-19 information to its Health First Colorado members.

“With the success of our ongoing texting program, we knew text was an effective way to reach our members,” said Ana Brown-Cohen, senior manager of health programs at Colorado Access. “With Welltok, we were able to quickly adjust our outreach messaging and modality to ensure as many members as possible received COVID-19-related information in an extremely short period time. We’ve had a good response from members who have appreciated the timely and relevant texts they’ve received.”

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Colorado Access sent more than 700,000 SMS text messages in English and Spanish to members over three weeks, leveraging Welltok’s data to target the right members with the right content. Messages ranged from basic COVID-19 facts and health risk information to providing resources for those who might have mental health risks due to social isolation. They also provided tips to manage stress, where to get food and unemployment support, as well as connected members with higher-touch programs if needed.

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“COVID-19 truly put the spotlight on texting as a welcomed way to frequently and effectively connect with Medicaid members,” said April Gill, senior vice president, solution management at Welltok. “We applaud Colorado Access for leading the way and being present for its members during this great time of need.”

Colorado Access expects to see an influx of new members in the next couple of months as more people experience job loss and lose their private health insurance. Welltok’s data and analytics will be especially valuable as they prepare how best to engage with them, as well as with existing members. Given the success of this initial outreach, texting is sure to remain a key component of its member engagement strategy to address current and future needs.

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