Reducing Health Disparities: A Health IT Solution

Period of Performance: 06/01/2014 - 05/31/2015

$393K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

MY Coverage Plan, Inc.
Madison, WI 53703
Principal Investigator

Abstract

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): My Coverage Plan Inc. (MCP) proposes to use our newly patented technology to create a commercially viable and nationally replicable suite of software and services for health care providers and other social service agencies that reduces avoidable health disparities and increases provider reimbursements. The MCP health IT solution will help providers proactively identify coverage options for patients with health disparities and help them maintain coverage by generating an electronic health care coverage record. Many Americans lack adequate health care coverage, a statistic especially true of disparity populations. The lack of insurance coverage harms both patients and providers. Patients risk poor medical outcomes and high debt burdens. And providers who serve these patients seldom receive full reimbursement for the medical care provided. Health care systems typically pass these losses to paying consumers and insurers. MCP proposes to address health disparities by offering a replicable software and service package that allows providers to proactively, accurately, and efficiently identify and secure coverage for disparity patients. The complexity inherent with the implementation of health care reform only heightens the need for improved provider services for patients with disparities. During Phase I, MCP established proof of concept and built a prototype of the benefits eligibility screening software. Building on the success of Phase I research and development, MCP proposes the following three aims for Phase II: 1) Expand MCP's screening capacity to fully locate, rank and record optimal public and or private coverage options for disparity patients across the age and disability spectrum;2) Test and refine the screening tool for cultural and linguistic competence, maximum accuracy, usability and national replication;3) Demonstrate the positive impact for disparity patients and measure the cost benefits for providers of MCP's offering in multiple settings. MCP is well prepared to carry out this project. MCP's President, Robert "Bobby" Peterson is an attorney and health care financing expert with over 25 years of experience in understanding and navigating complex programs for low-income disparity populations. MCP's parent company, founded by Mr. Peterson, ABC for Health, Inc., has provided health benefits counseling to low-income and minority patients for more than 18 years. Partner, ABC for Health will provide health benefits expertise to inform product development and testing. Other MCP committed partners include urban and rural hospitals and providers that serve disparity populations in Wisconsin.