Healthcare Payer News Highlights CodeBaby’ initiatives with CareFirst and Benefitfocus

June 20, 2013

CareFirst to use avatar to guide, engage consumers

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By: Mary Mosquera

CareFirstChloeMid-Atlantic region payer CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield will launch in October an intelligent virtual assistant, called “Chloe,” to help consumers who get their coverage directly from the payer’s website to select the appropriate health plan.

The technology will help to engage consumers as millions more of Americans will be able to obtain coverage under the Affordable Care Act and health insurance exchanges begin to enroll members in October.

CodeBaby will develop the 3D digital guide, or interactive avatar, which aims to make it easier for users of CareFirst’s individual enrollment tools to understand and navigate the payer’s health exchange plan options, educate them about their coverage choices to make the most informed decision, and to improve self-service capabilities, the companies said in a recent news release.

CareFirst said that the technology can play a role in helping it to meet the needs of its growing online customers and at the same time increase enrollment rates, reduce the number of service center calls and lower operating costs.

“Understanding the federal healthcare law and health insurance exchanges may prove to be daunting to any healthcare consumer,” said Chet Burrell, president and CEO of CareFirst, which serves customers in Maryland, Washington, DC, and Northern Virginia, in the release. “By working with CodeBaby, we are hoping to create a more user-friendly online environment for individuals looking to renew or purchase a health plan from CareFirst.”

The benefits advisor assistant aims to create an educational guidance path; enable consumers to shop, compare and explore; explain insurance information in everyday language; and make the application process faster and more accurate.

Customers of other insurers may also start having access to the benefits advisor avatar. At the 2013 AHIP Institute last week, Benefitfocus, which provides insurers and employers with benefits enrollment and management, said that it will incorporate CodeBaby’s intelligent virtual assistants.

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