Over 63,000 older New Yorkers in 19 counties are enrolled in a program to receive instantaneous communications from local offices for the aging about weather events, program benefit application deadlines, event reminders, surveys, and other important notifications thanks to a partnership between the New York State Office for the Aging (NYSOFA), the Association on Aging in New York (AgingNY), and Blooming Health.
The partnership began in September 2022 and is now being extended through September 2024 so that additional counties can opt-in and scale up their community outreach capabilities for benefit programs like the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), as well as time-sensitive information like weather or scheduling updates.
NYSOFA Director Greg Olsen said, “NYSOFA is pleased to continue our partnership with Blooming Health and help local offices for the aging in their efforts to scale up community engagement efforts in ways that reflect the diversity of available communications methods and preferences. Thanks to this partnership, agencies can help even more individuals who may not have realized they were eligible for – or needed to renew – benefits that can help them pay for food or lower their out-of-pocket costs. Older adults are also able to receive broadcasts to help them prepare for extreme weather events or simply learn about an upcoming program that can keep them engaged in their communities through health and wellness or social opportunities. We are thrilled about the outcomes – including a 300 percent increase in social engagement and a 500 percent increase in access to SNAP benefits.”
Association on Aging in New York (AgingNY) Executive Director Becky Preve said, “The Association on Aging in New York continues to collaborate with NYSOFA and Blooming Health to bring real-time access to communication between area agencies on aging and older residents. Blooming Health ensures accurate communication to address health and safety concerns, scams, benefit programs, social engagement, among others. Partnerships like Blooming Health allow aging services providers to continue to expand their reach and interactions for older residents and families.”
Blooming Health Co-founder and CCO Kavitha Gnanasambandan said, “We're thrilled to partner with NYSOFA and AgingNY to empower all of New York’s Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) to connect older adults with essential aging-in-place services. This collaboration improves access to aging-in-place services for older adults across the state and drives health equity. Building on the success of reaching 63,000 older adults through 19 AAA partners, we're excited to amplify our impact and address the unique needs of those facing technology and language barriers, particularly in rural areas. Saving staff time while increasing outreach and engagement reinforces our commitment to supporting AAA partners and ensuring all older New Yorkers age gracefully, independently, and with the care they deserve. We are excited to welcome all NY AAAs to take advantage of the Blooming Health platform."
Blooming Health is designed to improve older adults’ awareness and connection to community-based aging services via an inclusive, digital engagement platform. Targeted communications are sent via text message, landline voice calls, emails, and in an older adult's preferred language (including English and over 69 non-English options).
So far, older adults have received over 600,000 messages from Area Agencies on Aging notifying them with:
- Emergency weather alerts and broadcasts for community nutrition programs.
- Event reminders for evidence-based programs, nutrition education, vaccination clinics, and wellness programs.
- Surveys to assess client satisfaction with personal care aides, home-delivered meals, and other programs.
- Wellness check-ins to identify clients' social and health needs, and navigate them to relevant support services.
- Reminders to test devices such as personal emergency response systems.
- Application reminders for programs like HEAP or SNAP to ensure that individuals get timely access to important benefits.
Clients do not need broadband internet or a smart device to receive these communications. Providers can also receive longitudinal data on clients’ needs and outcomes, coordinate care, and better manage their population's health risks. In addition, agencies have been more easily able to screen clients for social determinants of health, such as food insecurity, financial insecurity, and transportation needs to provide them with appropriate support.
For its existing clients, Blooming Health has contributed to a three-fold increase in older adult engagement with provider services while saving two hours per day in outreach capacity for program staff and garnering an 85 percent satisfaction rate for older adult end-users.
Through a collaboration with the AARP Foundation and New York City-based community organizations, Blooming Health helped drive a five-fold increase in the number of older adults applying for SNAP benefits. Blooming Health also helped reduce the time from initial outreach with older adults about SNAP benefits application and their final application submission, from 57 days to 30 days – a 47 percent decrease. Further, personalized communication and engagement via Blooming Health enabled an increase in access to aging-in-place services across New York in 2023 versus 2022. This translated to 21% more meals, 65% more health and wellness attendance, 58% more education and recreation attendance, 39% more transportation, and a 41% increase in benefits screening and applications.
Counties interested in learning more about this partnership can visit www.gobloominghealth.com or reach out at email@example.com.
Older adults who live in the following participating counties can enroll to receive these personalized communications by contacting their local office for the aging. To reach your county agency, please see the directory on NYSOFA's website.
- Allegany County Office for the Aging
- Broome County Office for Aging
- Cattaraugus County Department of the Aging
- Chautauqua County Office for Aging Services
- Chenango County Area Agency on Aging
- Clinton County Office for the Aging
- Cortland County Office for Aging
- Delaware County Office for the Aging
- Essex County Office for the Aging
- Genesee County Office for the Aging
- Lewis County Office for the Aging
- Livingston County Office for the Aging
- Monroe County (through Lifespan of Greater Rochester)
- Montgomery County Office for the Aging
- Ontario County Office for the Aging
- Orange County Office for the Aging
- Oswego County Office for the Aging
- Schoharie County Office for the Aging
- Schuyler County Office for the Aging
About the New York State Office for the Aging
The New York State Office for the Aging (NYSOFA) continuously works to help the state’s 4.6 million older adults be as independent as possible for as long as possible through advocacy, development and delivery of person-centered, consumer-oriented, and cost-effective policies, programs, and services that support and empower older adults and their families, in partnership with the network of public and private organizations that serve them. Stay connected—visit the NYSOFA Facebook page and follow NYSOFA on Twitter; or visit aging.ny.gov.
About the Association on Aging in New York
The Association on Aging in New York (AgingNY) supports and advocates for New York’s mostly county-based Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) and works collaboratively with a network of organizations that exist to promote independence, preserve dignity, and provide support for residents of New York State as they age. For more information, follow AgingNY on Facebook, visit www.agingny.org, or call (518) 449-7080.
About Blooming Health
Blooming Health is an agetech company founded in New York with a mission to power healthy aging in place for all. Its inclusive, digital engagement solution enables aging care providers across 10+ U.S. states to scalably engage hundreds of thousands of older adults and caregiver clients in a personalized way across text, voice calls, emails, and over 70+ languages. The Blooming Health solution is intentionally designed to remove the technology and language barriers for older adults to receive the care they need at the right time. Aging care providers have seen a three-fold increase in client engagement via the Blooming Health solution, while also saving two hours per day in outreach capacity for their care staff.
To learn more about Blooming Health and this partnership, please visit us at www.gobloominghealth.com or reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.