Contact: Bobby Peterson, 608-444-7197
Madison – My Coverage Plan, Inc., a for-profit subsidiary of Madison-based non-profit ABC for Health, Inc., secured a major Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant of up to $1.6 million over 5 years from the National Institutes of Health, Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities. My Coverage Plan, Inc., is an early stage company developing disruptive technology solutions to reduce health disparities. Our local provider partner is St Mary’s hospital in Madison. “Our health care revenue cycle technology and solutions provide a win for patients and providers and promotes Madison as a leading developer of Precision Patient Advocacy™ technology,” says Bobby Peterson, founder and President of My Coverage Plan, Inc.
My Coverage Plan, Inc., www.mycoverageplan.com, founded in 2010 with a separate SBIR grant, secured a patent in 2012 on a software application that that acts like TurboTax® but for health coverage. The tool screens, identifies, and optimizes current and future public and private healthcare coverage and generates an electronic health coverage record. Improper alignment of health care coverage exacerbates medical debt issues and intensifies existing health disparities and increases costs.
The new funding promotes education strategies that reduce health disparities through workforce training that addresses the rapidly changing health care coverage program rules, requirements, and eligibility. The proposed Learning Management System (LMS) software called GURULZ™, will provide an initial assessment of trainees and establish a web based on-demand curriculum to train and maintain workforce competency about health coverage program rules and requirements. The GURULZ™ LMS system evolved from corporate parent ABC for Health, Inc. (ABC), HealthWatch Wisconsin, and training programs for Patient Advocates, Health Benefits Counselors, and Attorneys who help low income people identify and optimize health coverage. “Some folks called ABC staff the ‘gurus of health coverage rules,’ so GURULZ™ is our creative mash-up of that specific expertise,” said Peterson. “Pro-active patient engagement with trained and competent staff promotes better health outcomes, improves customer service, and enhances community health all while reducing uncompensated care. In 2014, uncompensated care totaled over $1.3 billion in Wisconsin. We can do much better,” said Peterson.
Phase 1 of the SBIR funding includes a comprehensive evaluation to establish proof of concept of GURULZ™ from 2016-2018. A subsequent three-year funding period is available to promote commercialization of the technology. “GURULZ™ will help health care providers and patients secure optimized coverage across Wisconsin and potentially across the nation. Peterson adds, “As a leader in Precision Patient Advocacy™ we hope to stay in Madison Wisconsin, but will carefully evaluate the best environment that promotes economic stability and growth for our high-tech company. With our patented technology and a boost in research funding, My Coverage Plan, Inc. will enhance a local culture of innovation, high tech job creation, and growth.”
Peterson adds, “Our strategic partnership with ABC for Health Inc., St. Mary’s Hospital and SSM Health Care can promote new efforts to train staff, engage patients and chip away at uncompensated care locally and eventually across the country. GURULZ™ will provide cutting edge training that informs learners of myriad nuances of both public and private health coverage options to help patients and dramatically reduce uncompensated care.”
Peterson concluded, “The timing is right for this technology. The emergence of Insurance Marketplace, coupled with many other program options aligns perfectly with our new patented technology solutions to support training, reduce health disparities, and promote and optimize consumer choices.”
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number 1R43MD011209 – 01A1 supports the research of this initiative.