Cigna launches pregnancy app following success of maternity program

Pregnant woman
A new app from Cigna will connect expecting mothers with health coaches to prevent preterm labor. (NataliaDeriabina)

Following the success of its “Healthy Pregnancies, Healthy Babies” program, Cigna has launched a new app aimed at reducing preterm deliveries through early identification of high-risk pregnancies.

More than half of eligible Cigna members enrolled in the maternity program in 2016, with 10% of enrollees experienced preterm labor, according to Cigna. That’s in line with national statistics that show 1 in 10 infants are born before 37 weeks.

The full-term (39 weeks and beyond) pregnancy rate was 79% under the program. By improving the likelihood of full-term pregnancies, Cigna says it saved nearly an average of $43,000 per participant identified at risk for preterm labor.

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The app, developed by Wildflower Health, makes that program more accessible to members. The company says that more than two-thirds of app users registered in their first trimester and 60% took an assessment to see if they were at risk for preterm labor.

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“Our new app is designed to make it easier to enroll and engage in Cigna's Healthy Pregnancies, Healthy Babies program, which has shown to have a direct impact on improved health outcomes for both mom and baby,” Patricia Stephenson, M.D., senior medical director at Cigna said in a statement. “The app delivers convenient, personalized guidance, giving expectant moms and dads information to help them make important health care decisions in real-time.”

In addition to providing users access to the program’s resources, the new app connects expecting mothers with a maternity health coach along with personalized health alerts and common symptoms.

Pregnancy-related deaths have been a focal point for U.S. lawmakers as maternal death rates have increased in recent years. Experts have testified that states need more funding to collect data in order to better understand why maternal death rates have more than doubled over a 15-year period.

California, however, has found some success in reducing maternal deaths even as national rates increased. At least part of that is attributed to the creation of a maternal data center.