New technology empowers clinicians and Medi-Cal members by providing access to interpretation services for non-English speaking Californians.
Anthem Blue Cross has deployed hundreds of digital solutions kiosks in health centers across the state to provide real-time video interpretation services and access to telehealth. The kiosks help clinicians overcome communication barriers and improve service to the growing number of non-English speaking residents in California.
“Through our holistic approach to meet the needs of the whole person, Anthem Blue Cross is creating and delivering innovative, data-driven, and personalized solutions that enhance healthcare experiences,” said Dr. Barsam Kasravi, Anthem Blue Cross President. “We know that expectations have evolved and people today expect a more customized and seamless experience. Technology is helping us close gaps in care and better support the populations we serve.”
Anthem has deployed more than 200 of these digital kiosks inside 80 health centers in the past six months with plans to install hundreds more across California.
“Effective communications between a clinician and patient is critical for safety and quality of care because this is how clinicians determine appropriate diagnosis and treatment plans,” said Dr. Demetria Malloy, Anthem Blue Cross Medical Director. “When language barriers exist, the risk of incorrect diagnosis, duplicative testing and inappropriate prescribing increases. Language barriers may make individuals less likely to seek care or build trusting relationships with their doctors and less likely to adhere to treatment programs.”
Anthem’s kiosks include Wi-Fi enabled tablets that allow treating clinicians to engage certified interpreters without having to pre-schedule in-person interpreter appointments or wait with third-party call centers. More than 240 languages are accessible. The tablets can also be used to provide comprehensive, whole person care by enabling access to medical specialists via telehealth and information about free community resources to address non-medical needs.
“Anthem Blue Cross is adopting a digital-first approach to our work and connecting with consumers when they want and how they want, putting them at the center of everything we do,” said Joel Gray, who led the project for Anthem Blue Cross. “While developing this solution, Anthem considered the diverse needs of our members, and how we could help care providers be more efficient. We then strategically built-in innovative features that are important tools amid the evolving healthcare landscape and essential during the ongoing pandemic.”
“The Anthem Blue Cross digital solutions kiosks are a tremendous benefit for the people we serve,” said Dr. Jonathan Porteus, CEO of WellSpace Health, a community health system that serves more than 100,000 people in Sacramento, Placer, and Amador counties. “Without the kiosks, our patients and healthcare providers were forced into a quagmire of perilous communication. Thanks to Anthem Blue Cross, we can speak clearly with each other in any language, on-demand, to achieve better health for everyone.”
WellSpace Health is one of the first health systems to utilize Anthem’s kiosks to improve services for their patients.
To learn more about the availability of interpretation services and technology, Anthem Blue Cross members should contact their treating physician or call the member services number on their Anthem ID card.
About Anthem Blue Cross Medicaid Health Plan
Anthem Blue Cross has been serving the health insurance needs of California residents since 1937. Anthem Blue Cross, together with its branded affiliates, provides health care services to more than 8.2 million health plan members in California, including a broad network of more than 65,000 providers. Offering a full continuum of product and coverage options, Anthem Blue Cross provides customers with unparalleled choice and flexibility in meeting their health plan needs. These options are continually fine-tuned to enhance and ensure access to affordable, quality health care. Anthem, with its strong track record for innovation, focuses on progressive products and services designed to improve the health status of all Californians. Unique offerings available in the individual, small group, large group, senior and Medi-Cal markets include a full range of integrated medical and specialty products. Anthem Blue Cross is the trade name of Blue Cross of California. Anthem Blue Cross and Anthem Blue Cross Life and Health Insurance Company are independent licensees of the Blue Cross Association. To learn more, visit www.anthem.com/ca. Also, follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/anthemBC_News or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/AnthemBlueCrossMediCal.