Florida Blue and Papa Partner to Address Social Isolation, Improve Health Outcomes
Program providing rides, companionship and support to Medicare Advantage members
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Dec. 5, 2019 - Florida Blue, the leading health insurer in Florida, announced today that it is partnering with Papa, a nationwide provider of senior services, to offer Florida Blue members in select Medicare Advantage plans assistance with transportation, house chores, companionship and other senior support services.
Social isolation is a significant issue for aging adults and can have a major impact on overall health. Papa, which connects college students to seniors, removes some of the burden and stress on family caregivers and provides a level of assistance and companionship for older adults. The program bridges the gap between two generations and offers seniors a unique at-home experience that can enrich their lives and help combat feelings of loneliness.
“Driven by our mission to help people and communities achieve better health, we take a holistic approach to health by offering solutions to fit our members’ needs and address social determinants of health like social isolation,” said Kathy Feeny, president of Florida Blue Medicare. “There is no one-size-fits-all solution for seniors, which is why we ‘re working with companies like Papa that specialize in senior services and understand how to meet the unique needs of aging adults.”
Starting Jan. 1, 2020, Florida Blue members in select Medicare Advantage plans, who have certain chronic conditions, can qualify for up to 120 hours of assistance a year (30 hours per quarter) by completing an annual wellness visit and a health risk assessment.
Once a member qualifies, Papa will provide a consultation to learn about the individual’s needs and discuss ways in which a Papa Pal can help. Papa carefully selects their “grandkids on demand” or college students, many of whom have a specific health-related focus of study. The senior, or their family member, can request a Papa Pal on demand through a phone call, a mobile app or an online platform.
According to the 2017 National Population Projections by the U.S. Census Bureau1 there will be 78 million people 65 and older by year 2035 compared to 76.7 million under the age of 18. As the senior population continues to grow, the need for reliable companionship and transportation will, too.
“Expanding our reach and partnership with Florida Blue will give more support to members who need extra assistance,” said Papa Founder and CEO Andrew Parker. “Papa is a company that genuinely cares about all seniors and we believe everyone should be able to experience what a difference a Papa Pal brings to the home. We are much more than a service; we become family. That is what support looks like and what aging adults need when someone comes into their homes. We are happy to provide that service.”
About Florida Blue
Florida Blue, Florida’s Blue Cross and Blue Shield company, has been providing health insurance to residents of Florida for 75 years. Driven by its mission of helping people and communities achieve better health, the company serves more than 5 million health care members across the state. In total, Florida Blue and its affiliated companies serve 27 million people in 35 states. Headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., it is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
Papa is a Miami startup that has Grandkids On-Demand who provide assistance and companionship to senior citizens throughout Florida, California, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Texas, Mississippi, Arkansas, Tennessee, South Carolina, Illinois, and Kansas. Papa launched their service in January of 2018. For more information, visit www.joinpapa.com