App Helps Insurers Improve Patient Outcomes After Comp Claims Are Filed
The PeerWell app combines clinical expertise with technology to help manage workers’ comp claims, providers say.
Insurers seek to improve patient outcomes when injured workers file compensation claims. CorVel Corp., a national provider of risk management solutions for payers and employers in the workers' compensation, auto, health and disability management industries, and PeerWell, a digital recovery platform that treats the root cause of pain and immobility, have partnered to launch an app to help case managers work with insurers as they support injured workers facing an upcoming surgery or experiencing back pain.
The PeerWell app combines clinical expertise with technology to help manage workers' comp claims for musculoskeletal injuries, said Karen Thomas, CorVel's director of case management innovation, and Manish Shah, co-founder and CEO of PeerWell. Following is an edited transcript of an interview with Thomas and Shah.
What inspired you to launch the app?
Shah: For me, personally, I saw what happened with my dad when he worked as a commercial painter his whole life and had a lot of wear and tear on his body and then, ultimately, ended up having two knee replacements.
How does the app work?
Shah: We're guiding (users) with home exercise programs for physical therapy, nutrition counseling, mental health and resiliency, health literacy, and improving the quality of their environment so they can have a safe and effective recovery and get back to doing the things that they need to be doing to enrich their lives.
How has it or how can it impact the overall cost of claims?
Thomas: We're seeing a 57% quicker return-to-work rate by using the app. It also decreases the overall medical spend, which is very exciting, in the neighborhood of 38%. It's pretty substantial.
Has it improved case management overall?
Thomas: The thing our nurse case managers love about the PeerWell app is it acts as another set of eyes for them. On the days that they're not in contact with the injured worker, the nurse can be assured that that person is interacting with the app and, again, becoming involved in their own recovery.
How does an app like PeerWell support a patient-centered approach to claims management?
Thomas: At CorVel, we believe in treating the whole patient holistically—body, mind—and PeerWell certainly does that. They're receiving education, not just on physical therapy, but on the whole person.