The Value of Long-term Coaching Connections

Digital chronic care is booming in order to keep up with the crisis of chronic conditions growing exponentially.

Ninety percent (90%) of healthcare spend is driven by people with chronic and mental health conditions. The five most expensive chronic conditions are diabetes, musculoskeletal (MSK), pre-diabetes, hypertension and anxiety and depression. Each of these conditions requires its own care program, care team, education and devices. 

At Omada Health, we understand that organizations are inundated with many providers to choose from, when considering what will be best for your population. It’s difficult for decision makers to differentiate one provider from another when they are overwhelmed with options. Coaching is a common feature in digital care solutions. For some providers, “coaching” means one time conversations during acute hyper- or hypo-glycemic events. During these interventions, the coach likely hasn’t met the member before. From there, the assignment between a coach and member is based entirely on the availability of coaches during that schedule.

graphics-01What makes Omada special is that we don’t only offer coaching as crisis management for acute situations, we offer deep and integrated services, and provide long-term designated care team relationships. Depending on the programs that a member is enrolled in, the care team is composed of health coaches, licensed specialists and/or PTs who approach behavior science from a care team approach. The care team understands that behavior change can be hard, and Omada has found that our members are best served by care teams who take time to get to know their members and build lasting rapport.

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What’s more, we didn’t come to this program design lightly. Instead, by evaluating over a billion actionable health data points and testing long-term relationships, we validated that care teams really do contribute to improving health outcomes. 

 

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Most Omada members start the program full of energy. During that time, they are asked to reflect on their motivations for joining a digital therapeutic program. They use that burst of motivation to track most of their meals during the first week. However, as the novelty of the program wears off, members start to skip meal-tracking. When a member who has been consistently meal-tracking takes a break for a couple days, it raises a flag. At this moment, a member of the care team will intervene, to help the member get back on track, and they return to meal tracking by about 10%.

As with every intervention, there's room for learning. Instead of simply noticing when a member stops meal tracking, we compare two types of interventions to learn even more. 

 

Varying Interventions and Learnings

We divided our group into two, to see if providing some additional context to the member would make a difference. The first group received generic advice from a coach about the importance of meal tracking. The second group received information about the importance of meal tracking as well, but they were also reminded of the reasons why they originally signed up for Omada. Coaches were able to do this by referring to past conversations they had with members in the beginning of the program. Members who were reminded of their previously written motivational statements were 5% more likely to return to meal tracking, and about 4% more likely to reply to their coach, compared to generic advice-containing messages. 

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And even better, this increase in meal tracking persisted several weeks after the intervention. When looking at the graph below, the fluctuating nature of the lines is because there’s more meal tracking on weekdays, compared to weekends.

graphics-03We've integrated what we learned in this intervention into our coaching platform, allowing it to scale to all members. But the work does not stop there, there will be a continuation of improved member care experiences thanks to the Omada Insights Lab. 

When you pick Omada for your population, you’re not just treating them for acute issues. Instead, you’re investing in a long-term care team relationship which improves lasting behavior change. 

If you want to invest in a long-term coaching relationship which improves lasting behavior change, connect with an Omada Benefits Advisor here.