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Health and App-iness — Blue Shield Helps Members Find the Best Apps For Their Health

Blue Shield welcomes new version of wellness program

Blue Shield of California has introduced a new, digitally-based lifestyle medicine and health platform that can be personalized to each of its members’ individual health needs and preferences. The nonprofit health plan’s reimagined Wellvolution is a giant leap forward from traditional wellness programs with its distinctive, consumer-focused approach that helps people holistically manage their health.

Wellvolution’s whole-health platform, created in collaboration with Solera Health, provides members guided, on-demand access to a tailored network of clinically proven applications – all using lifestyle to prevent, treat and even reverse disease. The program is available at no cost to members enrolled in Blue Shield’s fully insured employer-sponsored plans or its Individual and Family Plans.

Blue Shield’s new platform gives its members access to a best-in-class network of clinically proven health-management and wellness resources – the largest in the industry – that makes DIY (do-it-yourself) health possible, improving the ability to address:

  • Sleep quality
  • Stress management
  • Physical activity
  • Diet and nutrition
  • Tobacco cessation
  • Cardio-metabolic disease prevention (e.g. diabetes, heart disease, etc.)
  • Chronic condition reversal

In addition to a broad network of results-oriented digital therapeutic providers, Wellvolution offers a variety of online applications and in-person health and lifestyle-program resources to help members improve and maintain their health. In total, Wellvolution offers access to more than 30,000 brick-and-mortar services such as Weight Watchers, gyms and community centers, and nearly 70 digital health programs. This new approach, delivering digital and community lifestyle programs as a member benefit versus a traditional workplace wellness program, builds upon Blue Shield’s 10-year experience with its original Wellvolution program.

“Traditional wellness programs are clearly dead – too costly and ineffective – yet the zombie health management program epidemic continues. Enough already,” said Bryce Williams, vice president, Lifestyle Medicine at Blue Shield. “With Wellvolution, Blue Shield members and their families can now meaningfully utilize lifestyle to meet their health needs whether they’re trying to reverse disease such as diabetes or simply get a better night sleep, and it won’t cost them a penny more.”

“We are thrilled to collaborate with Blue Shield of California to create this revolutionary platform designed to drive sustained engagement and outcomes by matching members to the program that best meets their needs,” said Brenda Schmidt, CEO, Solera Health. “We look forward to our continued collaboration with Blue Shield as we evolve and expand the program to help improve their members’ health and wellbeing.”

Currently there are more than 320,000 health apps available online for consumers to choose from, and they lack trusted guidance to follow so they can achieve the health results they want. Wellvolution’s curated, scientific approach provides a proven path for our members to follow.

How Wellvolution works

Members create an online account, answer survey questions about their lifestyle and health goals, and get matched with their personalized approach. They receive step-by-step weekly action plans that act as their personal digital coach and have access to recommended mobile apps and in-person resources (e.g. Weight Watchers, stress management and fitness apps, local gyms, community centers).  

Because the programming is scientifically backed and the network is built on performance, vendor partners who provide the digital apps are held accountable for producing results through monthly reports that track app downloads, member engagement, and other metrics that determine their success in helping members achieve positive outcomes.

Selection criteria for digital applications

Wellvolution’s clinically validated digital apps have gone through a rigorous vetting process conducted by Blue Shield and Solera Health. They have proven results in-market and high consumer rankings. Most importantly, if an individual is not seeing the results expected or has a health goal change, he or she can switch to a different program at no cost. This approach ensures that participants remain engaged and see results.

Importantly, members with at-risk medical conditions (e.g. diabetes) are matched with health applications and resources that focus on disease prevention. All disease-reversal programs offered by Wellvolution have been clinically reviewed and have scientific evidence that they can treat members’ conditions at the same level or better than traditional therapy. For this group, Blue Shield and Solera selected vendors that leverage evidence-based methods and scientific principles to support a statistically significant reduction of risk factors for populations who don’t have a disease and reversal of existing conditions for those who have a chronic medical condition. They also measure demonstrated success with user engagement and satisfaction to ensure that these solutions can be delivered to members in real-world, real-life settings.

About Blue Shield of California
Blue Shield of California strives to create a health care system worthy of our family and friends that is sustainably affordable. We are a nonprofit, independent member of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association with 6,800 employees, more than $20 billion in annual revenue and 4.3 million members. Founded in 1939 and headquartered in San Francisco, Blue Shield of California and its affiliates provide health, dental, vision, Medi-Cal and Medicare health care service plans in California. The company has contributed more than $500 million to Blue Shield of California Foundation since 2002 to have a positive impact on California communities. For more news about Blue Shield of California, please visit our News Center at Or follow us on LinkedInTwitter, or Facebook.

About Solera Health

Solera Health is committed to changing lives by guiding people to better health in their communities. The company serves as an integrated benefit network that connects patients, payers and physicians with community organizations and digital therapeutics providers, simply and securely. Solera helps consolidate highly fragmented programs and services into a single marketplace allowing health plans and medical providers to increase consumer participation while lowering associated costs. By using data science to proactively identify the "best fit" program provider based on each  individual's unique health goals, needs and preferences, the company has proven to have a significant impact on improved patient outcomes at a fraction of the cost of traditional medical care. For more information, visit Solera Health at