LAS VEGAS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today Castlight Health®, Inc. (NYSE:CSLT) showcased how large companies can reduce wasteful healthcare spending, control costs, and improve employee productivity with the Castlight Enterprise Healthcare Cloud. The company’s Insights team of data scientists also released results from a new nationwide analysis of employees health search patterns that demonstrate the complexity of optimizing healthcare spending across a diverse employee base. Castlight issued the news from the HR Technology Conference and Exposition (HR Tech; booth #1326), the foremost U.S. meeting for tech-savvy HR executives.
“U.S. companies spend $620 billion on enterprise healthcare annually. Unfortunately, more than 30 percent of that spend is wasted. To date, employers have simply accepted those dollars as lost, believing healthcare costs to be uncontrollable,” said Giovanni Colella, M.D., co-founder and CEO of Castlight Health. “We’re pleased to report that dynamic is changing. More than 130 companies across 25 industries have selected Castlight’s Enterprise Healthcare Cloud. In doing so, these companies dispel the myth that enterprise healthcare cost can’t be controlled.”
Castlight is the first company to provide a cloud-based technology platform specifically designed to help large American employers transform healthcare from a cost center to a strategic business investment. At the HR Tech meeting this week, the company will feature real-world examples regarding how the Enterprise Healthcare Cloud is empowering companies to reduce unnecessary spending and waste, and leverage existing investments in employee health and productivity.
For example, emergency room (ER) overuse is a significant problem in the United States. More than $38 billion is spent annually on ER-related costs and 56 percent of all ER visits are believed to be avoidable. For a Fortune 500 company, Castlight pinpointed that ER overuse was a concern across multiple locations within the company and notably so at a few worksites. Using the Castlight Enterprise Healthcare Cloud platform, the company ensured employees saw alerts and incentives to encourage use of telemedicine, urgent care facilities and online education, instead of ER visits. ER visits at sites with heavy ER overuse were reduced by 21 percent, resulting in measurable cost savings and improvements in productivity from employees spending less time away from work.
In addition to reducing wasted spending, the Castlight Enterprise Healthcare Cloud is helping employers increase returns from existing investments in employee health and productivity, such as wellness and preventive care programs. It is estimated, on average, employers offer 6-10 disparate wellness and preventive programs for employees. With Castlight, employers can integrate these programs through the technology platform, creating a seamless ‘one-stop shop’ for employees.
For example, an employee entering a “pregnancy” search in the Castlight platform can prompt a dialogue box to appear to sign up for a Healthy Baby/Healthy Mom session. A search on “depression” in the Castlight platform can present an employee with an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) and a direct link to a therapist hotline. A search in Castlight on “cough” can instantly connect an employee with a telemedicine provider. Employers have seen up to a 4x increase in program engagement rates when a program is integrated into the Castlight Enterprise Healthcare Cloud.
Castlight Insights Create Opportunity to Optimize Healthcare Spending
Also at the HR Tech conference, Castlight released a new, nationwide analysis examining search behaviors in the Enterprise Healthcare Cloud for U.S. employees ages 18-64. For this analysis, Castlight’s Insights team of data scientists focused on distinctive searches1 to gain a greater understanding of the actual needs from employee populations based on age, gender, region, and search time of day.
“The findings demonstrate employers should consider workforce needs multi-dimensionally when optimizing their benefit strategy and employee engagement programs,” said Sophie Pinkard, director of Strategic Analytics at Castlight. “Employers would be well-served to factor in both the more obvious factors -- the demographics of their employee and dependent populations -- and the less obvious — regional preferences and daily work rhythms,” said Pinkard.
More details about the analysis can be found on Castlight’s website. Highlights include:
- Across all employee populations, family planning and family care terms were top searches. Creating and caring for a family is top of mind among men and women nationwide, with notable regional nuances that reflect the differences in age and fertility of parents across the nation.2
- Employee communications about health need close attention to effectively reach both genders. Simply put, women and men speak different languages. Men use natural language search to address a specific problem or body part, like “rash” or "tooth", while women’s distinctive searches include medical terms like “laparoscopic fibroid removal” or “colposcopy”.
- Employers with a robust Millennial3 employee base should know these employees value dental care and behavioral health benefits. The terms “dentist” and “anxiety disorders” are top searches for Millennials, but not other age groups.4
- Regional preferences should inform covered services. Employers with multiple geographic locations across the country should be attuned to local norms and preferences.5
- To reach all employees, 24/7 access to a search platform is needed. Daytime searchers predominate across gender, age and region (80 percent of all searches were performed during daytime hours; 6 am – 5 pm), but men – especially younger men (ages 20-34) – are almost 3 times more likely than average to search in the wee hours of the night (12 am – 5 am).
Castlight Insights is one of four solution centers provided by the Castlight Enterprise Healthcare Cloud. The Castlight Solution Centers provide a set of applications and services that enable employers to deliver cost-effective benefits, provide medical professionals and health plans a merit-based market to showcase their services, and – most importantly – empower employees to make informed healthcare choices by providing full transparency and a clear understanding of costs and likely outcomes.
About Castlight Health
Castlight Health, Inc. (NYSE:CSLT) believes great healthcare builds great business. For more information visit www.castlighthealth.com. Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn and Like us on Facebook. Source: Castlight Health.
Copyright 2014 Castlight Health, Inc. Castlight Health is the registered trademark of Castlight Health, Inc. Other company and product names may be trademarks of the respective companies with which they are associated.
1 The most distinctive search for each group is defined as the term the group searches for at the highest rate as compared to Castlight's overall population of end users.
2 “Birth control”, “fertility”, “pregnancy”, “birth”, and “pediatrician” are distinctive searches across regions and genders for men and women under 40. In the Midwest, Mountain West, and South Atlantic, distinctive searches for maternity occur sooner — in the 25-29 age group for women --- compared to the 30-34 age group for women in the Northeast, Pacific West, and in the South Central. “Midwife” is a distinctive search term only for women in the Midwest. “Vasectomy” is a distinctive term for men ages 30+ across the country.
3 Millennials (also known as the Millennial Generation or Generation Y) are the demographic cohort following Generation X. There are no precise dates when the generation starts and ends. Researchers and commentators use birth years ranging from the early 1980s to the early 2000s. For the sake of this analysis, we considered ages 20-34 to be Millennials.
4 In general, Millennial men and women across the country search for dental care 2-5x more than Castlight’s average and search for Anxiety Disorders 1.5-2x more than Castlight’s average.
5 “Naturopathic doctor”, “massage therapy”, and “acupuncture” are distinctive searches across ages and genders in the Pacific West. Men and women in the South Atlantic and South Central regions were almost 3 times as likely as the rest of the country to search for surgery related to weight loss, such as “bariatric surgery”, “gastric bypass”, and “lap band”.