Healthy Together's Partnership with Florida Wins Award for COVID Response
As states struggle to keep up with the higher post-pandemic demand for their services due to a series worker shortage, one approach they are taking is to deploy tech solutions through partnerships with tech companies in the private sector.
Healthy Together, a cloud-based SaaS Disease Management Platform with 40 employees working remote in Utah, New York, and San Francisco, has been helping the state of Florida's Department of Health (FDOH) deliver COVID-19 test results to Florida residents efficiently and in real-time.
In June 2020, the Florida Department of Health's Division of Disease Control engaged Healthy Together to support case investigators, deliver timely test results to residents, and automate case investigation processes.
With a population of over 21 million residents, manual processes at labs and testing providers combined with heavy demand for testing created significant delays in the time to deliver diagnostic results to residents. The rising number of cases caused the FDOH to seek a more efficient, scalable solution.
The Florida Department of Health partnered with Healthy Together to deploy a case management system and mobile application to deliver real-time test results to residents. Through the application, FDOH has been able to successfully deliver over 30 million diagnostic results to state residents, helping the state agency fulfil its mandate and expectations despite a shortage of workers.
As part of the deployment, Healthy Together built and implemented a self-serve, digital case interview based on CDC guidelines and FDOH standards to assist in case investigation. Over 90% of self-serve case interviews have been completed within one hour of receipt of a positive test result, a staggering 10x increase in speed to deliver services with more contacts elicited than traditional manual methods.
Data captured by the digital case interviews is fed to its auto-scaling AWS hosted case management software that automates data analysis, decreasing manual processes and reducing the need for hiring additional staff.
Over the course of the partnership, over 50% of Florida households have utilized Healthy Together's services. Healthy Together has since partnered with additional states, counties, and tribes to scale and automate other government processes such as Medicaid, SNAP and TANF eligibility, enrollment and renewal, WIC program management, and behavioral health systems.
On December 6th, 2022, the Advanced Technology Academic Research Center (ATARC) awarded the partnership of Healthy Together and the State of Florida's Department of Health (FDOH) with a Digital Experience Award at their 2022 GITEC Emerging Technology Award Ceremony in Washington, D.C.
The Digital Experience Award spotlights government projects that promote exceptional citizen service experiences through the use of technology. ATARC nominates organizations that have radically improved the experience of government and pushed the boundaries to build customer-centric human connections in our digital world.
While awardees typically come from federal agencies, FDOH was selected because of the widespread success of its roll-out of the Healthy Together mobile platform in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Other 2022 winners include NASA, the Department of Veterans Affairs, ATF, GSA, the U.S. Army and the Marine Forces Cyber Command.
"We are incredibly proud to have our partnership with FDOH recognized by ATARC," says Jared Allgood, President of Healthy Together. "The Digital Experience Award is a powerful validation of the impact we were able to have and our mission to improve collective health and make government more efficient. We are excited to continue to innovate and modernize resident access to government services with our technology."
The private-public partnership comes at a time when state agencies across the nation are experiencing worker shortages and are needing to become more creative in fulfilling basic state functions, such as delivering COVID test results, in the case of Healthy Together. Other critical roles such as law enforcement have been impacted as well, inducing states to do things they normally would not do, such as handing out $5,000 signing bonuses to new recruits.
Here in Utah, Governor Spencer Cox recently announced the elimination of the state's previous requirement for bachelor’s degrees in its employee recruitment, affecting 98% of the currently posted state jobs which now do not require a degree. Instead, state hiring managers are considering comparable experience as equal to educational qualifications at every step in the evaluation and recruiting process in order to broaden the pool of potential new hires.
Healthy Together is an example of how a private tech company can partner with a state agency to carry critical state functions with more speed and efficiency than those of traditional approaches that are vulnerable to worker shortages.
More more information about Healthy Together visit www.healthytogether.io.