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This month, at Uber’s annual product event, GO-GET, Uber Health announced Uber Caregiver, a new solution designed specifically for caregivers and their loved ones. For the first time, beginning this summer, care-receivers will have the ability to add a caregiver to their Uber profile, empowering them to request and monitor rides and deliveries, as well as apply the care-receiver’s eligible health benefits to pay. The solution is designed to help patients maximize their ancillary healthcare benefits and to improve the care experience for caregivers and care-receivers alike.

More than one in five Americans – 53 million people – are caregivers. A growing subset of these caregivers are adults who care for their aging parents while raising their own children, holding a job, and balancing other household and family duties. Caregiving is demanding work, with responsibilities ranging from medication management, to assistance with daily activities, to administrative tasks like scheduling appointments, grocery shopping, and meal planning. About half of caregivers say the role has increased their emotional stress, and 39% say that they’re rarely or never relaxed. The logistical responsibilities of calling a health plan to determine benefit eligibility, deciding how to pay for an appointment or delivery, and submitting expenses for reimbursement add another layer of stress and complexity to the role. This can also contribute to financial strain; the average caregiver spends about $7,000 annually out of pocket.

Uber Caregiver is designed to relieve this logistical burden and provide peace of mind. It aims to transform the historically fragmented, complicated, and time-consuming process of navigating ancillary benefits with a one-stop shop for caregivers to understand and act on benefit information on behalf of their loved one. Soon, care-receivers can invite caregivers directly in the Uber app. Where eligible, caregivers will be able to view a loved one’s ancillary healthcare benefits, coordinate services like transportation to a medical appointment or grocery delivery, and help the care-receiver pay in-app using their health benefit cards. By leveraging Uber’s mobility and merchant networks, Uber Health can help meet caregivers and patients where they are.

Benefits include:

– – Care at the tap of a button: Beginning this summer, caregivers will be able to quickly and easily coordinate benefits like rides and grocery delivery on behalf of family members in an app they already know and love, receiving real-time updates along the way.
– – Enhanced visibility into ancillary healthcare benefits: As plans come on board to Uber Caregiver, caregivers will have information about their loved one’s benefit eligibility – for example, how many more rides will be covered or how much of a monthly grocery benefit remains – available in the Uber and Uber Eats apps. This will empower caregivers to coordinate services and deliveries without worrying about what will or won’t be covered.
– – Reduced financial burden: Almost 80% of caregivers pay for some care-receiver expenses out of pocket. The new offering will allow care-receivers to give caregivers permission to pay for services with their loved one’s eligible health benefits to reduce financial strain.

This is the beginning of Uber Health’s efforts to address caregivers’ pain points. In the coming months, the organization will begin working with Medicare Advantage, Medicaid, and commercial plans to provide enhanced support to caregivers in the United States.

Caregivers will have the ability to coordinate transportation on behalf of a loved one on the Uber app beginning this summer. Additional capabilities will roll out later this year.