PALO ALTO, Calif., Sept. 29, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- California-based Kurbo Health and Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM), one of the nation's leading health and well-being companies, have teamed together to target a fast-growing threat to today's youth - obesity.
Starting this month, qualified employers with a Humana health plan will have the option to purchase a twelve-month subscription to Kurbo Health's mobile health coaching and weight loss program as a wellness benefit for employees' children. While insurers in the past have provided access to weight loss programs to companies for adult employees, this is the first time a wellness program specifically designed to help an employee's children has been introduced on such a large scale.
A digital adaptation of the renowned Stanford Pediatric Obesity Program, Kurbo combines a food and activity tracker mobile app with subscription-based, personalized coaching via text, phone calls and video chat. Throughout the twelve-month subscription, Humana will offer live health coaching to children in addition to the personalized coaching via text, phone calls and video chat offered by Kurbo Health.
"Employers have begun to realize the impact of childhood obesity in several ways – both through increased medical bills and prescriptions for associated ailments and diseases such as diabetes – and indirectly, through parents' lost productivity and engagement during the work day," explained Kurbo CEO and Founder Joanna Strober. "Humana is leading the well-being charge by considering the whole family benefit of assisting employees' children to get on the path to health."
"Employers need effective disease management programs to support behavior change in families pursuing health and fitness goals," said Kristine Mullen, Vice President of Wellness Leadership for Humana. "Humana's partnership with Kurbo Health is personalized to the unique needs of families battling obesity and is embedded in medical solutions for employers seeking long-term workforce health and well-being."
Launched in July 2014, the Kurbo app has been downloaded by more than 50,000 people and helped thousands of children and teens get healthy and lose weight through the coaching program. A recent Kurbo pilot study showed that 88 percent of children reduced their BMI at a healthy rate after using Kurbo coaching and its mobile app. These children reported higher levels of happiness, self-confidence and self-esteem.
According to most studies, about one-third of large employer beneficiaries are dependents under the age of 25, and children and adolescents are responsible for 15 percent of a typical large employer's health care cost. Since obese children are twice as likely to need medical care and typically have health expenses three times higher than non-overweight children, it's easy to see a correlation behind childhood obesity and rising health care costs. In fact, the annual health care cost of obesity in the U.S. has doubled in less than a decade and is estimated to now be as high as $147 billion a year. According to the American Journal of Health Promotion, obesity is costing U.S. businesses more than $13 billion annually in health insurance claims, paid sick leave and disability and life insurance.
About Kurbo Health
Kurbo Health provides the first mobile health coaching solution designed specifically to help children and families lose weight and develop smarter eating choices. It is based on one of the most advanced weight-management programs from Stanford University and has been proven effective in helping kids lose weight and create healthy habits. Kurbo kids and families receive weekly video consults and goal-setting with a trained professional coach via Skype or FaceTime, a mobile app designed to help them track food and exercise on their smartphone, and daily support from a team of experts through emails, text messages, and in-app games and videos. Kurbo is backed by venture funding from top-tier investors including Signia Venture Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, Data Collective, Promus Ventures and Rock Health. For more information, please visit www.kurbo.com.
Humana Inc., headquartered in Louisville, KY, is a leading health and well-being company focused on making it easy for people to achieve their best health with clinical excellence through coordinated care. The company's strategy integrates care delivery, the member experience, and clinical and consumer insights to encourage engagement, behavior change, proactive clinical outreach and wellness for the millions of people we serve across the country.
More information regarding Humana is available to investors via the Investor Relations page of the company's web site at www.humana.com, including copies of:
- Annual reports to stockholders
- Securities and Exchange Commission filings
- Most recent investor conference presentations
- Quarterly earnings news releases
- Replays of most recent earnings release conference calls
- Calendar of events; and
- Corporate Governance information.
SOURCE Kurbo Health