Tag: Solera Health

Providing a Way For Employees To Manage Hypertension Will Pay Off For Employers In the Long Run

Byron Crowe

By Byron Crowe, MD, chief medical officer, Solera Health.

Chronic disease remains a leading cause of disability and death in America. With 40% of adults experiencing two or more chronic conditions, the clinical and financial burden of these conditions are widespread and accounts for reduced life expectancy and $4.1 trillion in annual health care costs.

Hypertension in particular is a widespread public health concern given its clear linkage with cardiovascular and kidney disease. The CDC estimates that nearly half of U.S. adults – 116 million people – have hypertension, contributing to hundreds of thousands of avoidable deaths from cardiovascular disease each year.

The cost of hypertension for employers and employees

Employers can expect to have large numbers of individuals with hypertension, with some portion experiencing major complications such as heart attacks and strokes every year. In addition to the human toll taken by uncontrolled blood pressure, hypertension-related employee absenteeism costs employers roughly $10.3 billion annually. Not only are employees with high blood pressure four times more likely to die from a stroke, but it puts them at significant risk for developing cardiovascular diseases, leading to $1,100 in lost productivity annually.

When an employee suffers from hypertension, the medical costs are up to $2,500 higher annually than those who do not. Additionally, about $29 billion is spent yearly on blood pressure prescriptions, including $3.4 billion in out-of-pocket spending. Managing conditions like hypertension can be costly and extremely difficult – especially in conjunction with intersectional diseases and symptoms.

But the time and money spent by each party do not have to be significant. By driving sustainable lifestyle modifications, ensuring medication adherence, and offering accessible and continuous care, digital solutions can help address gaps in hypertension care by meeting the diverse needs of both employers and employees.

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Healthcare’s Digital Transformation: How The Virtual-First Ecosystem Is Changing How We Approach Care

Mary Langowski

By Mary Langowski, CEO, Solera Health

Investments in digital therapies and solutions are making it easier for consumers to obtain the help they need, whether it be for sleep issues, stress, anxiety or other conditions. Frankly, this digital transformation could not come at a better time for patients and payers, who have waged an uphill battle to deal with rising healthcare costs.

To cover escalating costs, payers have been forced to raise premiums and deductibles to the point of straining consumer budgets, which risks discouraging some patients from seeking care for chronic issues that can lead to more serious conditions requiring costly treatments. A recent study by Kaiser found that annual family premiums for employer-sponsored health insurance increased by 4% in the past year alone. The study also found that average family premiums have increased 55% since 2010 – at least twice as fast as wages (27%) and inflation (19%). 

After searching for more affordable alternatives, consumers and a growing number of payers and employers are discovering virtual-first healthcare, a more consumer-centric approach to addressing health needs by beginning with online resources and service providers. This emerging ecosystem is improving healthcare outcomes by giving consumers greater control and choice to treat chronic conditions, mental health concerns and other challenges through inexpensive digital experiences. 

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