- Kroger announced Thursday it has partnered with healthcare technology company Soda Health on a personalized benefits program for social care needs, food, health products, pharmacy and nutrition services.
- The new Smart Benefits Program, which is operated by Soda Health and relies on Kroger Health's services, allows participating Medicare Advantage, Medicaid and employer benefits program recipients to access certain pharmacy, nutrition services and other benefits at the grocer’s pharmacies as well as buy eligible food and over-the-counter health items.
- The program furthers the work by Kroger’s healthcare arm to address nutrition security concerns and advance food-as-medicine efforts.
The Smart Benefits Program offers personalized health recommendations such as reminders about health screenings, vaccines and prescription refills as well as suggestions for medical supplies.
Program participants can use benefit resources, which are funded by insurance plans, through a Soda Health debit card to pay for nutritious foods and quality healthcare services at participating retailers, according to the announcement. Participants can also use the debit card to pay for transportation to medical appointments and personal utility bills.
“We know food has such a large impact on health outcomes for our customers and patients. By improving access to healthy, affordable food and other health resources, we are working toward truly changing the way America eats,” James Kirby, chief commercial officer of Kroger Health, said in a statement.
Earlier this year, Kroger Health announced a new Medicare Advantage plan offering that targets Medicare-eligible shoppers in partnership with Select Health, the insurance subsidiary of nonprofit hospital operator Intermountain Health.
A few weeks later, Kroger Health unveiled a partnership with Performance Kitchen to expand access to medically tailored meals for people living with various chronic diseases, including diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
Kroger Health also offers consumers a healthy eating and nutrition app called OptUp as well as has registered dietitians who provide food-as-medicine guidance