People Behind Cara Care: Hassan Azar
We are proud to present Hassan as part of our Advisory Board. Hassan helps us make Cara Care accessible to every employee in the USA. Hassan has over two decades of experience as a leader in the employee benefits field – driving innovation in corporate health and wellness programs for large international corporations. Currently he is Head of Global Total Rewards at JLL where he leads the company’s healthcare, retirement and compensation programs, and he has had similar roles at US Foods, Mondelez International, Kraft Foods, Delphi and Ford. He also worked as a Healthcare Consultant with Towers Perrin, at Blue Cross of Michigan focusing on provider reimbursement strategies, and at St. John Health System in Detroit managing outpatient clinics. Having worked at an employer payer, a health plan, a medical provider and a consulting firm, Hassan has a unique perspective of the healthcare ecosystem. Hassan has served on several boards including the National Business Group on Health, Midwest Business Group on Health, numerous healthcare-related councils and coalitions, and also as an advisor to the Employer Health Innovation Roundtable (EHIR). Hassan has a Masters Degree in Health Services Administration, an MBA, an MA in Communications and a BA from the University of Michigan. He also has a JD from the University of Detroit School of Law.
1. What’s your story? How did you become an expert in healthcare?
My pursuit to help improve cost, quality, and value in healthcare began while working at a hospital system and then a health insurer. My experience working to shape the delivery and financing of healthcare gave me an appreciation for both the complexity and the opportunity to improve the delivery of health services. And while designing and leading corporate healthcare programs, I have become compelled to seek ways to improve the cost, quality, and access to healthcare.
2. Where do you see digital health offerings moving to in the next five years?
The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need to ensure that individuals have access to evidenced-based clinical guidance and treatment remotely. When non-urgent and discretionary services at most healthcare facilities were discontinued, the need for care did not cease – it was just difficult to obtain and resulted in delayed care.
Digital health tools and services have stepped in. They are able to guide, diagnose, monitor, manage, and improve an individual’s health – both efficiently and effectively. Over the past few years I have witnessed the power of digital health tools, seeing how they have improved the health of thousands of employees. And over the next few years, I believe that digital health tools will help solve some of the most pressing issues in healthcare such as uncontrolled costs, unnecessary care, treatment errors, ineffective reimbursement models, and poor access to care. The power of data-driven digital healthcare, coupled with artificial intelligence and remote monitoring by licensed coaches and medical providers, will ultimately transform how healthcare is delivered across the globe.
3. You’re an advisor for Cara Care. What do you think is something unique that Cara Care offers?
Over the past 20 years I have been working with providers, insurers, wellness companies, and digital health companies in an effort to design tools and programs that will improve health outcomes across a population.
Cara’s focus on guiding patients on a path to improved GI health through AI, data-driven decision making, evidenced based care, and a guided nutritional therapy program will shape the future of GI care. I believe that Cara Care can make significant and lasting contributions to the cost, quality, and access to GI services for people across the globe.