SPRINGFIELD, Ore., Oct. 29, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Papa, a nationwide platform for companionship and support for older adults and families, and PacificSource Community Health Plans, an independent, not-for-profit community health plan serving Medicare members across the Northwest, today announced a partnership to address the social needs of the Greater Northwest’s most vulnerable populations. The collaboration offers a new approach to combating loneliness and isolation and its impact on health.
Papa’s companionship and care services will be available on January 1, 2022 to members of PacificSource Medicare Special Needs Plan. PacificSource and Papa share a mission to support the health and well-being of vulnerable populations, including older adults. PacificSource leadership in this critical area represents a larger commitment to improving members’ social determinants of health (SDoH), or the circumstances in which people are born, grow, live, learn, work, and age, which directly affect physical and mental health.
Nearly half of all United States seniors described themselves as lonely in a survey by researchers at the University of California San Francisco[¹], and one quarter describe themselves as socially isolated in research done by the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine.[²] Beyond the stereotype of lonely older adults, there are real health consequences to loneliness and social isolation for many populations.
To address this, Papa created an on-demand workforce of vetted “Papa Pals” who provide companionship and support the specific needs of older adults and those most vulnerable — helping to close gaps in care and connectedness.
“Perhaps more than any other condition, loneliness and isolation widen the gap between healthy, independent living and the marginalization that leads to health challenges,” said Andrew Parker, Papa founder and CEO. “Through our work with PacificSource and its members, our Pals can assess firsthand SDoH needs, and help address these far too common barriers to health and vitality. PacificSource has an 80-year reputation for taking great care of people, for going the extra mile to know customers one-on-one. We’re proud to call them a partner.”
“Everyone deserves to live as they choose and in the healthiest way possible,” said Liz Bainter, Vice President of Clinical Quality and Population Health at PacificSource. “One of the exciting things about partnering with Papa is how we’ll work together to assist members in greatest need, on a one-on-one basis and where the most significant difference can be made in the individual’s health and quality of life. This is a unique opportunity to impact members’ lives in a profound way.”
PacificSource members can request a Pal through a phone call, mobile app, or online platform. Papa will consult with members to learn about their individual needs, and in which ways a Papa Pal can provide the most help. Papa Pals are trained companions who assist directly with medical appointments, grocery shopping, technology troubleshooting, and much more. Papa’s platform uses technology to streamline access to in-the-home support, and to efficiently and meaningfully engage with people on a personal basis.
To learn more about this partnership, please visit medicare.pacificsource.com.
Papa and its Pals platform provide “family on demand,” by working with Medicare, Medicaid, and employer-sponsored health plans to provide a companionship and care benefit for older adults and families. Founded in 2017 and headquartered in Miami, Papa’s investors include Tiger Global Management, Comcast Ventures, and Canaan, among other revered institutional and individual investors. For more information, visit joinpapa.com.
About PacificSource Community Health Plans
PacificSource Community Health Plans is an independent, not-for-profit community health plan serving Medicare members throughout the Northwest. Founded in 1933, PacificSource has local offices throughout Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Washington. The PacificSource family of companies employs more than 1,500 people and serves over 523,700 individuals throughout the Greater Northwest. For more information, visit PacificSource.com.
PacificSource Health Plans Media Contact:
Lee Dawson, Public Relations Manager
Papa Media Contact:
120/80 MKTG on behalf of Papa