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mPulse Supports Over 30 Customers During the Unwinding of Continuous Enrollment

LOS ANGELES – mPulse Mobile, a leader in conversational AI and digital engagement solutions, announces collaborations with over 30 managed healthcare organization customers to leverage digital engagement strategies to support the redetermination of Medicaid and CHIP enrollees following the end of the continuous enrollment period that was part of the Covid-19 public health emergency (PHE). These collaborations will ensure millions of low-income Americans retain the health coverage they need, and will provide digital resources to help individuals who no longer qualify for Medicaid transition to public exchange plans.

On December 29, 2022, President Biden signed a federal spending bill containing legislation decoupling continuous enrollment from the PHE effective April 1, 2023. Medicaid and CHIP enrollees will have to go through the recertification process to retain coverage. Medicaid Managed Care organizations (MCOs) have a 12-month timeframe to initiate and two additional months to complete renewals for their members in collaboration with local and state agencies. On January 23, 2023, the FCC issued a declaratory ruling reaffirming that the provision of a mobile phone number by a member to their state agency during the enrollment process constitutes prior express consent. Therefore, text outreach is an effective tool to drive the recertification process.

“Medicaid plans face a large administrative challenge to ensure their enrollees have continuous access to care,” said Bob Farrell, CEO of mPulse Mobile. “Many Medicaid beneficiaries tend to change addresses frequently, so traditional mailed recertification communications are less effective, whereas mobile phone ownership is well above 90% and text is utilized across populations. mPulse has pioneered the use of text outreach across lower income populations and individuals who face SDoH impacts, and we’ve consistently demonstrated our ability to engage and activate these hard-to-reach populations to take positive action for their own health.” 

mPulse is working with a broad set of national and regional MCOs to deploy digital outreach programs to support members through the recertification process. mPulse’s conversational AI capabilities allow health plans to send out reminders with embedded links to online sites for recertification and ask questions about barriers that may be preventing members from re-enrolling. As members respond via text, the automated program addresses the issues they identify, which provides a robust consumer experience and improves program outcomes. mPulse has deployed automated conversational programs to Medicaid populations across seven languages. Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, mPulse’s digital outreach redetermination programs consistently delivered over 20 percentage point improvements in redetermination rates compared to traditional communication channels.

Learn more about mPulse Mobile’s support for Medicaid and CHIP member redetermination »

“With much of the last year spent in a holding pattern with each 90-day PHE renewal, we finally have a clear path through the end of the unwinding phase,” said Reva Sheehan, Senior Director of Customer Insights at mPulse Mobile. “However, that doesn’t mean it will be easy. This is an all-hands-on-deck moment for Medicaid MCOs. We encourage all impacted health plans to take advantage​ of CMS’ call for states and MCOs to work together, and the FCC’s clarification of prior express consent to text and call individuals to provide assistance through the entire recertification process. In addition to known challenges and barriers, many of these individuals have never been through a recertification process. The robust multi-channel communication approach that mPulse Mobile provides is the best way to keep at-risk members from slipping through the cracks.”

Visit the full press release ​on business wire »

People of mPulse: Tom Godfrey, Vice President of Engagement and Content

If you ask Tom Godfrey what he does for a living, he’ll tell you that he helps people “build and practice the skills of health.” As mPulse Mobile’s Vice President of Engagement and Content, he and his team of instructional writers, behavioral scientists, visual designers, and health equity strategists design mPulse’s many engagement solutions—everything from SMS campaigns to encourage flu shots to online courses that teach people with chronic disease how to manage their complex conditions. 

It’s this mix of disciplines and capabilities that Tom believes sets mPulse apart in terms of the power and potential of its engagement solutions. “Getting your members to make healthy choices and take healthy actions isn’t as simple as just telling them it’s time to do so. We need to find creative ways to engage, and I think by combining our omnichannel communication strategies and techniques with powerful digital content like educational videos, animations, interactive stories, and more, we can truly connect with members in ways that helps them take charge of their health.” 

Making Learning Fun

Tom never intended to have a career in health engagement. He started out in corporate training. While he enjoyed it, there was one thing he noticed that bugged him. “Most corporate learning is lousy. It’s not fun. It’s not interesting. It’s just information, often delivered poorly. There are exceptions, but it seems the goal of most training is to be able to say the content has been delivered, not that meaningful learning has occurred.” So Tom made it his mission to be different. Regardless of topic or goal, Tom believed anything he was going to put in front of others with the aim of driving change needs to be, “worth their limited time, relevant, actionable, and cool.” If it isn’t those things, they won’t pay attention and it won’t work.

Those beliefs led him to digital learning where his career flourished and he built a reputation as a truly creative and innovative learning designer. In 2014, he was recruited as employee number one at The Big Know, where he spent seven years helping them build a modern digital learning platform for healthcare. Acquired by mPulse Mobile in 2021, the merger combined The Big Know’s rich media content development capabilities with mPulse’s proven ability to reach and engage vital member populations.

A Team Approach

When asked what his proudest achievement has been at mPulse, Tom immediately gives kudos to the people around him. “I’m really proud of the team we’ve built. We’ve got some really talented people that care about being able to make a difference in the lives of others and care about making content they’re proud of. And they’re good at it. So I feel pretty lucky that I get to work with them.”

Looking to the future, Tom believes they’ve only just started to scratch the surface of how tightly they can integrate the content they create on the streaming side with the messaging solutions that we build on the platform side. “I believe the use of this content, combined with our expertise in behavioral science, can super charge our engagement efforts for our clients. Now we just need to do it at a bigger scale and design our solutions in a way that they better address the challenges of health equity for the different audiences we support,” he says.

Expanding Horizons

Married with three kids, Tom lives in “The Bold North” (a.k.a. Minneapolis, Minnesota), and enjoys spending time together as a family and traveling as much as they can. Since getting married to LeeAnne, they moved from Minnesota to Arizona, from Arizona to Seoul, South Korea, and from Korea back to Minneapolis.

Later, after having been home for a few years to have their first two children, they were presented with another opportunity to live and work in France, which they jumped at. “We didn’t hesitate. We packed up the kids and went. And it was so worth it,” says Tom. “It reflects a value that’s important to my wife and I, which is exposing ourselves and our children to different cultures. It’s hard but fun being a foreigner. It teaches you things that you don’t get if you just stay where you are,” he adds, highlighting a core belief that might’ve just played a small part in influencing what he’s spent his life doing…expanding other people’s horizons and opening their minds to a world of opportunity.