Wildflower Study Compares Mobile App Engagement
Among Commercial vs. Medicaid Populations
Will Medicaid members engage with a mobile app that supports healthy pregnancies? And will this population engage at a higher rate than commercial groups?
Wildflower recently studied engagement for our Medicaid clients and compared these rates with commercial clients to determine which audience was most likely to engage with our mobile pregnancy app.
Despite the consistent success we’ve experienced with commercial plans, our hypothesis was that engagement rates would be even greater for our Medicaid clients.
Because mobile health applications that are purpose-built for Medicaid audiences have proven to be extremely effective in engaging these traditionally hard-to-reach populations.
Turns out, we were right.
Based on our analysis, Wildflower’s Medicaid users have consistently higher engagement rates on average than our commercial users.
We compared data from March 2017 – February 2018 for a group of our Medicaid clients against a group of our commercial clients., Both groups used the same app platform with core architecture, tools and content, but with varying client branding and configured content.
To measure engagement, we examined two metrics: 1) average sessions per month, and 2) continuing users – percentage who sustained engagement month over month
Our findings show that Medicaid users:
- Launch a Wildflower app 30% more often than our commercial users
- Have a 5% higher retention rate than our commercial users
The Medicaid group consistently outperformed the commercial group in average sessions per month. While the two groups were closer to equal in the % continuing users analysis, Medicaid still topped commercial in 9 out of 12 months examined:
BEHIND THE DATA
What are some possible explanations for the success in Medicaid? We have identified two major drivers of the higher engagement rates.
- Internet usage/access
According to the Pew Research Center, a growing share of lower-income Americans are smartphone-only internet users. This increasing dependency on smartphones for online access is especially common among younger adults, non-whites and lower-income Americans.
Commercial users, who are typically higher income, may have multiple, connected devices used to access health information online, potentially diminishing the relative utility of a single app or source.
- Specific health needs
Since Wildflower apps for Medicaid often include tools and content related to the social determinants of health (e.g. community resource look-up with local WIC nutrition centers, Head Start, transportation, etc.), Medicaid users may derive greater value from the app at an individual level.
Medicaid populations have a thirst for trusted information from their health plans and providers. And when this support is provided to them in a personalized, user-friendly, mobile-enabled way, it is consistently embraced.
As one of the most personal and high-impact health conditions, pregnancy offers a unique opportunity for Medicaid plans to produce healthier outcomes, both clinically and financially, by leveraging the strengths of mobile technology.
For a demo of Wildflower Health’s mobile applications and how we can help your Medicaid population, please contact: Dilek.firstname.lastname@example.org
 Medicaid clients in this group included two multi-state MCOs and one fee-for-service state.
 Commercial clients in this group included two multi-state commercial health plans.
 Pew Research Center. See: http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/03/22/digital-divide-persists-even-as-lower-income-americans-make-gains-in-tech-adoption/