Health Tech

NationsBenefits, Instacart Team Up To Provide Online Grocery Services

Through a new partnership, health plans that use NationsBenefits can offer Instacart’s grocery delivery services as a supplemental benefit.

As more insurers look to provide access to healthy food, NationsBenefits and Instacart have partnered to provide online grocery services to Medicare Advantage, Medicaid and commercial plan members, the companies recently announced.

Plantation, Florida-based NationsBenefits is a benefits administration company that partners with managed care organizations. It offers supplemental benefits, flex cards and member engagement solutions. San Francisco-based Instacart, meanwhile, is a grocery technology company. Its healthcare division provides access to healthy food and partners with healthcare organizations for food as medicine programs. Its recent partners include Alignment Healthcare, Kaiser Permanente and DispatchHealth.The company can reach 95% of North American households.

Through the partnership, health plans that use NationsBenefits can offer Instacart’s delivery services as a supplemental benefit. Members can use their plan-sponsored funds through their NationsBenefits Mastercard to buy groceries for same-day delivery from more than 85,000 stores. They can do this through the NationsBenefits Virtual Storefront on Instacart, which offers a curated list of healthy food.

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“This gives more people — including seniors — greater access to fresh and nutritious groceries, pantry staples and other essential goods, helping them overcome transportation barriers and extend their budgets with the convenience of having everything they need delivered,” said Sarah Mastrorocco, vice president and general manager of health at Instacart, in an email.

NationsBenefits chose to partner with Instacart to provide members with more options for their health benefits, said Michael Parker, chief operating officer of the company.

“Over the years, we’ve prioritized building a platform for health plans that can empower members to use and spend their benefits how they want to,” Parker said in an email. “We want to maximize member accessibility, and partnering with Instacart does just that. By adding thousands of grocery stores across the country to our network, it will really make a big difference in helping us best cater to the diverse needs of our members.”

The companies declined to share the business model of the partnership.

The partnership between Instacart and NationsBenefits comes at a time when more and more healthcare organizations are working to improve access to healthy food. Other healthy food companies include Season Health and NourishedRx. In addition, companies like Kaiser Permanente, Elevance Health and Highmark Health are ramping up food programs for their members.

In working with Instacart, NationsBenefits aims “to enhance our member experience and improve their overall health and quality of life,” Parker said.

“By leveraging Instacart’s intuitive technology and extensive network, we can significantly reduce barriers to accessing nutritious food, particularly for vulnerable populations and people living in food deserts,” Parker declared. “We want to redefine the intersection of healthcare and convenience, improving health outcomes while delivering innovative solutions that promote food as medicine programs within communities across the country.”

Photo: mikdam, Getty Images