MetLife program boosts customers’ health recovery
Sydney November 05, 2018
A pilot program providing services to people with primary mental health conditions is delivering improved customer function, community integration and a better customer experience, according to MetLife, leading life insurer in Australia and globally.
MetLife has released data from its Nourish program, showing 60% of participants in the program reported an increase in physical or mental function across one or multiple dimensions of functioning (see notes below), such as mobility and self-care, measured against the World Health Organisation’s Disability Assessment (WHODAS) 2.0 scale. The program has also led to a seven fold increase in people participating in occupational rehabilitation compared with 2016 data.
Early participation and functional improvement in health and recovery programs leads to better customer, community and social outcomes, reducing the risk of long term disability.The program is offered by MetLife to their customers as a free service and participation is on an opt-in basis.
Launched in November 2017, the Nourish program’s goal is to help people return to function, before considering a return to work, allowing them to actively improve their quality of life and long term health. The program primarily supports MetLife customers with mental health conditions including anxiety and depression. It provides access to tailored advice, support and specialised services to help improve function, build resilience and resolve concerns relating to their condition, their social circumstances and their psychological status to aid recovery. These services include psychoeducation, self-help, support groups and community integration, skills training, activity scheduling, capacity support, goal setting as well as suicide and relapse prevention.
Nourish was designed by MetLife’s in-house health recovery specialist team. MetLife’s Chief Claims Officer and program Director, Mark Raberger said the program is part of MetLife’s focus on improving health outcomes for its customers:
“By focusing on return to health, we find that people in the Nourish program are more engaged, more motivated and able to focus on the things that really matter to them. Work is a significant component of our lives, but when you ask most people who are ill or injured, it’s kicking the footy with their children, going out with friends and being part of their community that drives their recovery, more than work alone. We’re encouraged by the increasing rates of participation in the program - this tells us that we’re offering a program our customers value.
“Our teams are trained to get a deep understanding of the customer’s biological, psychological and social situation to best understand and work with them on a tailored plan to help achieve their goals. We’re thrilled to see early positive results from the Nourish program in helping customers who have made a claim, return to health more quickly.”
“The primary focus of the program is on improving function, but we are seeing people setting bigger goals for themselves such as returning to employment, which is a key factor in boosting self-worth and overall wellbeing. People need to set their own goals, and if work is one of them then we can support that. However, if they have other goals first, we equally support these to help them improve their functioning. One in five Nourish participants return to work within three months of commencing the program, and 32% have had their primary medical carer clear them to increase their work duties or hours. This is a really tangible way the program is helping people.”
Nourish forms part of a suite of health and wellbeing services MetLife is developing to support its customers regardless of whether they’ve made a claim or not. These services include awareness and education, health insights and prevention, early detection and support, return to health and for those that are never going to improve, longer-term care management to support their situation.
MetLife is also rolling out the Nourish program to customers who may have a primary physical condition and have developed secondary symptoms that are contributing to their poor health – these can include mental health situations that evolve after being ill or injured. This program is being tested with customers recovering from cancer, where often motivation, resilience and community engagement has been heavily impacted.
Nourish is part of MetLife’s Health and Wellbeing initiative, which is designed to shift to a more proactive and preventative approach to health and wellbeing, helping people at all stages of their health journey, from when they are well through to getting back to work after experiencing a physical or mental health event. It’s a holistic, integrated suite of tools, services and resources which includes a digital lifestyle app.
“At MetLife we care deeply about supporting our customers on their health journey, from when they’re fit and healthy to claim time when they need us the most. This is about taking a more holistic approach to help our customers get back to living a more meaningful life”, Mr Raberger said.
WHODAS 2.0 covers 6 Domains of Functioning, including:
- Cognition – understanding & communicating
- Mobility – moving & getting around
- Self-care – hygiene, dressing, eating & staying alone
- Getting along – interacting with other people
- Life activities – domestic responsibilities, leisure, work & school
- Participation – joining in community activities
Sarah Kelly, MetLife Australia
+61 (0)411 893 890