Cigna Health Coach Brings Digital Health Coaching to 500 Million People

Cigna wanted to develop an artificial intelligence "health coach" addition to Samsung's S Health App. The current S Health App is installed on 500 million mobile devices worldwide. It helps users track diet, exercise, and weight.

  • Typical health assessment completion rate: 30%
  • S Health assessment completion rate: 90%
  • S Health app is installed on over 500 million mobile devices worldwide

Good Health Begins With Good Behaviors

But Cigna's health coach would do more. It would provide health advice, motivation, and feedback to Cigna members via the app. So Mad*Pow worked with Cigna to test a number of concepts. Ultimately, Mad*Pow developed the health coach now provided with every S Health App.

The Process: Creating a Global Health Coach

Cigna wanted users around the world to take advantage of the health app’s health behavior features. So Mad*Pow's first challenge was to find out what the 21% of global smartphone users with Galaxy devices all wanted. To do this, Mad*Pow conducted desirability and usability testing in five countries.

Research, Research, Research

Unsurprisingly, initial feedback varied greatly by location. So Mad*Pow kept going. They interviewed and surveyed Galaxy users in the USA, Chile, China, Germany, and South Korea. With the help of Mad*Pow's partnership with the International User Experience Partners (IUXP) organization, they were able to meet many users in person. Slowly they began to highlight common needs.

S Health Health Changes Chart
M*P: types of healthy changes research results

Keep Your Team Close and Your Client Closer

At the same time, Mad*Pow worked closely with the Cigna product team and Samsung developers to understand the client’s clinical and marketing requirements. The team worked onsite at Cigna for a month to uncover the product requirements. This close working relationship allowed Mad*Pow to turn around changes quickly. When design began, the requirements were clear.

S Health Healthy Workshop Sketch
M*P: concept sketches from client design workshops

The Results: Real World Behavior Change

Mad*Pow delivered a robust user interface for the digital coach, which uses algorithms to mimic real-world interactions. It collects data from the Samsung sensors to set goals, provide feedback, and offer encouragement — just like a human coach.

The team also provided a playbook for the Cigna team. The playbook addresses daily user engagement, so Cigna can help its members achieve their wellness goals. The new behavior change strategy helped Cigna’s medical team develop geographic-appropriate content and logic to power the digital coach AI.

The Cigna health coach also includes a gamified health assessment. The fun, engaging nature of this new assessment has translated to soaring completion rates. Completion rates for typical health assessments are in the 30% range. But Cigna's gamified version delivers completion rates of 90%, and feedback for the mobile app in the AppStore is overwhelmingly positive.

S Health Workflows Application Map
M*P: workflows and application maps

Big Thinking with a Human Touch

While the project had multiple urgent deadlines and pivot points, the 18-month engagement allowed Mad*Pow to create a number of different options, ranging from playful games to data-heavy applications. The final digital health coach uses algorithms to mimic real-world interactions. It collects data from the Samsung sensors to set goals, provide feedback, and offer encouragement — just like a human coach.

Keep Your Team Close and Your Client Even Closer

Mad*Pow worked closely with the Cigna product team and Samsung developers to understand the client’s clinical and marketing requirements. We worked onsite at Cigna for a month to narrow in on the final design and document requirements for Samsung’s developers. This close working relationship allowed Mad*Pow to turn around changes quickly through collaboration and seamless communication.

Digital Coach Keeps Patients Worldwide Practicing Good Health

At the end of the project, Mad*Pow delivered a robust user interface for the digital coach, along with a playbook that addressed daily user engagement so Cigna could help its members achieve their wellness goals. The new behavior change strategy helped Cigna’s medical team develop geographic-appropriate content and logic to power the digital coach AI. 

The new app starts with a gamified health assessment -- or health survey -- that customers engage with as they enroll in their health plan. By gamifying this process, completion rates have soared. For a typical health assessment, completion rates are in the 30 percent range, Cigna's gamified version delivers completion rates of 90 percent.

Feedback for the mobile app in the AppStore has been positive, with reviews including "I love how motivating this app is", "Overall keeps me 110 percent more focused of the items that matter and material that's most precious", and "It helps me … I learn."

S Health Mobile Screens
M*P: final screen designs

Key Services

  • Research and Testing: Mad*Pow's research team learned from users across 5 countries. They conducted both qualitative and quantitative studies to learn about user needs around the world.
  • Behavior Change Design: The health app was based on a behavior change strategy. This led to the gamification of the health assessment. In the future, Cigna will continue to use this strategy, captured in a playbook.
  • Experience Design: The design team made the strategy into a reality. This work brought together Cigna's brand, an intuitive UI (even across cultural norms!), and accessibility to create an engaging experience.
  • Mobile App and Web Development: Mad*Pow developers were integrated into Cigna's dev team to support the health app's creation. Mad*Pow's collaboration helped ensure the app would be a success.

 

"I love how motivating this app is. It keeps me 110 percent more focused on the items that matter and material that's most precious, and it helps me … I learn."​​​​

Appstore Review