Caleb is a 16 years old boy with asthma, and his insurance provider is Medicaid.
At his annual physical, Caleb shares with his physician that he’s been doing well physically but has been feeling sad, maybe even depressed. His doctor realizes that therapy or antidepressants isn’t the answer, and Caleb shows interest in arts or music. His doctor then writes a prescription for six-months participation in arts & culture through an electronic referral to Art Pharmacy.
Caleb is connected with an Art Pharmacy Care Navigator, who talks to Caleb about his interests and experience engaging in the arts, any access barriers, the need to participate with a companion (i.e. parent or friend) and any contra-indicators. The Care Navigator has access to baseline information about Caleb’s well-being via the WHO-5.
The Care Navigator made recommendations for the highest-efficacy arts engagements based on Caleb’s interests. In this case, the Care Navigator purchased a ticket for the community arts center along with securing transportation to and from the event.
After Caleb attended the event, Art Pharmacy billed his Medicaid Managed Care Organization. Then, the Care Navigator followed up to assess his well-being, as well as reported that data back to his pediatrician. The process repeated itself six times over six months, at which point Caleb requested a refill.
As a result of these experiences, Caleb was more engaged at school and was selected by his school district as the most improved student. His WHO-5 score improved from a 10 to a 16, and eight tickets to arts activities were purchased on his behalf.
If we can discover more opportunities to engage with patients like Caleb, social prescribing would proliferate more quickly than any of us can imagine.
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