CHICAGO (January 31, 2022)—Zing Health is teaming with Papa, a social care service, to help Medicare Advantage HMO plan members reduce loneliness and improve overall health.
Papa’s in-home support services assist with instrumental activities of daily living such as grocery shopping and meal preparation, light housekeeping, transportation or simply engaging in conversation. A curated platform provides companionship and support for older adults, families and other vulnerable populations.
“Like Zing Health, Papa is a provider that addresses the social determinants of health that keep people from getting the care they need and deserve,” said Dr. Eric E. Whitaker, founder and CEO of Zing Health. “We improve members’ whole health by providing services beyond traditional Medicare.”
Trusted Companions Lend an Ear to Stop Social Isolation
Papa Pals allow members to live independently, engaging with them in person or virtually. They assist with appointments, technology and other issues that boost health and well-being.
“Not only are they providing social support, but these Papa Pals are building a rapport and a relationship with our members,” said Dr. Trent Haywood, chief medical officer at Zing Health. “Companions are having conversations related to their healthcare and may be able to identify tripping hazards and other health risks.”
Papa was founded in 2017 after CEO Andrew Parker realized his grandfather needed some support but didn’t want to be a burden. Parker knew his own Papa and other older adults could be happier and healthier with in-home companionship and an open ear.
“The collective physical, social, and emotional benefits of this companionship are vast, and the opportunity to reduce loneliness and to support health where it happens, at home, is boundless,” Parker said.
An Eye for Well-being
Papa Pal companions can do more than pick up prescriptions. They’re also trained to look for declines in health and escalate wellness concerns.
“Reducing social isolation can have as much impact as a direct intervention such as smoking cessation,” Dr. Haywood said. “The Papa service allows for regular ongoing touch points with this friendly, trusted person who could help get you to the doctor's office, connect you with plan benefits, and be the eyes and ears on the ground to make sure gaps are closed and needed resources are deployed.”
Zing Health plan members learn about Papa and other care services in their benefit summary and welcome packet or from their care manager or insurance agent. Zing Health has also requested that Papa’s community reaches out to all members to let them know about the service.
“Zing Health was founded to deliver solutions that negotiate and manage the different social determinants of health,” Dr. Whitaker said. “So we see a lot of value in the ability of Papa companion care to provide support outside of the clinical setting and within the comfort of the members’ own environments.”
Zing Health is a Medicare Advantage HMO Plan with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in Zing Health depends on contract renewal. Zing Health complies with applicable Federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex.