Cloud-based health exchange and benefits engagement platform developer PlanSource announced the availability of a mobile app that allows employees of organizations who use the PlanSource Platform access to their benefits in one location through an Apple iOS mobile device.
The app, which is available for free download through the Apple App Store, allows employers to use the PlanSource Platform for benefits shopping, enrollment, billing and ongoing administration.
Within the app, consumers can access relevant details about each elected plan, share their ID cards and store relevant health care contacts.
"Consumers want personalized experiences and engagements. That's another way that we are transforming health care," Jamie Walker, vice president of product and consumer engagement at PlanSource, told eWeek. "Gone are the days where people tolerate being a nameless faceless cog—they want a personal experience that is designed for them. If that means they want to engage on a mobile phone, then we best have a mobile engagement to serve them. If they want a desktop, phone or et cetera, we should have the same for them."
Additionally, the app gives employers another way to communicate with employees about benefits, events and other important information through push notifications.
"If anything, health IT needs to be even more streamlined and simple to navigate because let's face it, traditionally, navigating health care has been acronym soup with a side of crusty confusion," Walker explained. "The industry transformation provides us with an amazing once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to make it clear for the average consumer by developing tools that are similar to what they are used to using for everyday experiences and language that makes sense."
Walker said consumers are always consumers—it doesn't matter if they are shopping for flights or comparing health plans or looking for a new primary care provider.
Consumers can store useful benefits contacts including physicians, nurse lines and important health links, and the security rigor applied to a desktop software is applied to the mobile app, including encryption, multi-level authentication and security time out along with validation of benefit views.
"This is just version 1.0 of our mobile capabilities. Through 2015 we will be streamlining the experience, adding functionality that will allow the consumer to transact and as we move into 2016, we will be further integrated with our partners in meaningful ways for our consumers," Walker said. "It's about how the consumer wants and needs to engage with their benefits—and the more the benefits are personalized to their preferences, the better the results, which is what we are focused on delivering."