Rippl, Alzheimer’s Association Partner on New Dementia Care Navigation Tool

Rippl, Alzheimer’s Association Partner on New Dementia Care Navigation Tool

Tech-enabled behavioral health company Rippl has partnered with the Alzheimer’s Association to create a new digital dementia care navigation tool for caregivers and physicians.

The new online tool, called the Dementia Care Navigation Services (DCNS), will aim to address current gaps in the dementia care service model for patients and caregivers by removing care bottlenecks and improving the way older adults receive health care services, according to Rippl co-founder and CEO Kris Engskov.

Rippl, launched in 2022, is a mental health company offering 24/7 support and personalized care to seniors, families, caregivers.

Rippl will offer dementia patients and caregivers access to around-the-clock access, care coordination, medication management and support resources.

Alongside the roll-out of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) effort known as the Guiding an Improved Dementia Experience (GUIDE) model, Rippl will take part in an eight-year pilot program. Rippl will integrate “clinically and technologically” with primary care providers and health systems and the DCNS will participate in the GUIDE model.

“GUIDE is the first time we’ve had an alternative payment program for dementia care that’s going to compensate providers like Ripply for what we do from a Medicare perspective,” Engskov said in an interview with Memory Care Business. “We’re also seeing traditional payers recognizing how important this issue is from a cost standpoint.”

Rippl’s on-demand dementia care model was inspired by recent research by the University of California San Francisco’s Memory and its Care Ecosystem model that was developed to meet unmet needs of dementia patients and caregivers.

One of the principles of the new services aims to give primary care physicians more tools in managing costs associated with dementia care, with the new service navigation tool able to offer additional services of a physician’s practice.

“We really want our service to be a catch-all and that’s why we built the clinical model the way we did from a care navigator all the way to some one who can write prescriptions because we can provide a full range of services anytime they need it,” Engskov said of how the new service can improve PCP participation.

Involving primary care providers in the dementia care ecosystem is critical since dementia patients most often have chronic health conditions, while also being able to diagnose symptoms sooner, Engskov added.

In the last four years, Engskov said the Covid-19 pandemic showed how high quality health care could be given virtually, with health systems and senior living providers pivoting to embed and invest more deeply in technology to support operations and improve health care services.

“We know we can deliver the highest quality care with technology and it’s becoming much easier to work with communities and we’re doing it every day,” Engskov said. “With payers behind that are willing to help, I think it becomes a no-brainer and pushes everybody forward.”

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