Kaiser Permanente launches network to address social needs

Oakland, Calif.-based Kaiser Permanente revealed May 6 that it is launching a health network to address people's social needs such as food, housing and transportation.

The network, Thrive Local, is a partnership between Kaiser Permanente and Unite Us, a healthcare tech platform primarily functioning in social determinants of health.

Through the platform, Kaiser Permanente aims to connect healthcare and social services providers to address social needs for millions of people nationwide, according to a news release.

"Kaiser Permanente has long understood that total health can only be achieved through a combination of physical, mental and social care," said Kaiser Permanente Chairman and CEO Bernard Tyson. "In order to thrive, people need access to the things that are vital to health, such as secure housing and nutritious food. Our unique mission to improve not only the health of our members, but also that of our communities, drives us to undertake impactful initiatives like Thrive Local to connect our communities with the services they need. This is one of our bold moves."

Implementation of the new social health network of nonprofit, public and private resources is scheduled to begin this summer. Kaiser Permanente representatives said they expect the network will be available to 12.3 million insurance plan members and the 68 million people in the communities the healthcare giant serves within three years. Community-based organizations will also have access to the network.  

 

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