Walmart partnership targets health disparities

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An attempt to create 'healthier individuals and communities'

Walmart partnership targets health disparities

BENTONVILLE, Ark. — Walmart is partnering with the managed care organization CareSource on a program that will attempt to address racial health disparities in underserved communities, the companies said on Wednesday.

The three-year deal will leverage Walmart’s position as a retailer and provider of health and wellness services, and CareSource’s role in the administration and delivery of Medicaid, Medicare and other health plan benefits and services. The two companies will aim to cultivate innovative, evidence-based solutions to improve health outcomes in under-resourced and underserved communities where racial health inequities are widespread.

“Our goal is to utilize our combined assets to create healthier individuals and communities,” said Walmart Vice President of Social Determinants of Health Warren Moore. “We’re trying to close the gaps in care and promote positive health behavior change through holistic, culturally sustaining, high-quality health and wellness solutions. CareSource is the ideal partner to help bring this vision to life.”

The partnership will begin in Ohio, with a focus on cardiometabolic conditions (heart disease, stroke, diabetes, hypertension). According to the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, heart disease, stroke and diabetes were among the top 10 leading causes of death in the state. To address this, the partnership will use Walmart’s in-store Community Health Workers to facilitate the completion of state-approved health risk and social needs assessments, and connect select CareSource members to community resources, life skills support and health literacy education. Eligible CareSource members will receive monthly funds to spend on food, a Walmart+ membership for no cost, and access to tele-nutrition services to aid in improving their health outcomes. CareSource members will also be able to take part in CareSource Life Services, including CareSource JobConnect, which provides a path to financial empowerment and improves both economic mobility and health outcomes.

The two entities will also work together on a maternal and child health program to support positive lifestyle behavior change and improve maternal and child health outcomes in Georgia, the state with the second-highest maternal mortality rate in the country. Under the agreement, expecting mothers or mothers who are 12-months post-partum and enrolled in CareSource’s Georgia Medicaid managed care plan will have access to Walmart in-store Community Health Workers, a “directed spend” program providing monthly funds to spend on food, tele-nutrition services and tele-doula services, and will also receive a Walmart+ membership.

“This partnership will address the major needs our members face, which are difficulty with transportation, access to healthy food, access to care and assistance with care coordination,” said CareSource Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Williams. “We know providing additional support, such as an in-store community health worker, will create another access point to ensure our members have the resources they need, within a location they frequent. As a result of this relationship, we expect an immediate, positive impact in the lives of our members.”



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