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New Medicaid Members? Here are Communication Strategies for Boosting their Engagement

Health plans have always had trouble engaging their members – particularly when it comes time for members to renew their eligibility. Traditional outreach methods that prompt this engagement are often time-consuming and expensive. Plus, their lackluster results leave many plans wanting more from their efforts.

Following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, total Medicaid/CHIP enrollment grew to 88.3 million by April 2022 – an increase of 17% from February 2020. Many Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) are looking for ways to help new Medicaid members retain their eligibility as states resume normal operations.

Many of these newly gained members have never gone through a redetermination process. Consequently, most don’t know their eligibility could expire or the steps needed to retain it. This problem is why MCOs’ outreach programs are so critical. These efforts help alert members when they need to complete their redetermination and (crucially) provide the methods for doing so. However, for MCOs to see meaningful results from these efforts, they must deploy the right tactics.

Here are a few things to remember as your plan reaches out to new members.

Employ Digital Outreach Methods

Newer, more effective outreach methods are available for MCOs. Automated phone calls, reminder alerts, and guided SMS texts are all more effective and far less costly than traditional phone calls. These new practices are easy to implement and can help plans see better results. Through our interactions with clients, we have seen a two-fold increase in member engagement when using texting.

Here’s what makes Digital HRA different.

See How HealConnect Boosted Completion Rates 

Around the Clock Member Support

Many traditional outreach methods only attempted to reach members between 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sagitec recently worked with one of the largest health plans in the U.S. to update its member outreach practices. Through our HealConnect platform, we helped it deploy text messaging and saw that 48% of members completed their screenings after 6 p.m. and another 20% during the weekend. These are often when most plans have reduced or no staff on hand. A guided, automated system can help MCOs curb this gap in service without having to incur substantial costs.

New Outreach Methods

The core problem with traditional outreach methods is that they are time-consuming and effortful for members. Phone calls or mailers typically require 30-45 minutes to complete. Digital strategies, on the other hand, are far less intrusive for members.

SMS texts, digital alerts, and email communications allow members to complete the redetermination steps when it works best for them. With many members undergoing the redetermination process, which outreach strategy will your plan choose? Making initial contact is only the first step in connecting with your members. Digital methods could be vital to helping your health plan overcome challenges in engagement. For more information on getting started with Digital engagement, learn how Sagitec’s HealConnect can help.

Topics: HealConnect Medicaid