Highmark online tools check COVID-19 symptoms, enhance customer service

Artificial intelligence helps streamline inquiries related to pandemic
May 5, 2020

Highmark has introduced two new online tools to help all consumers find information on COVID-19 symptoms and appropriate care, and help members find customer service resources.

As the pandemic began, Highmark relaunched its website,, with up-to-date information on COVID-19 and details on what Highmark is doing for members, such as waiving out-of-pocket costs for testing and treatment, along with tips on how to stay safe and get care, including telemedicine.

“To continue to offer simple, actionable answers to customer questions during this crisis, we are launching two additional tools intended to deliver timely and critical information to our member base,” said Stacy Byers, vice president of customer experience for Highmark.

Highmark collaborated with the CDC Foundation and Microsoft to develop and launch the COVID-19 Symptom Checker Healthbot, which saw more than 30,000 visitors in the first week on the site. The majority of visitors to the site are between the ages of 40 and 59.

Anyone can use the Healthbot to check their symptoms, and it will provide guidance on seeking appropriate medical care when necessary during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We wanted to make sure anyone – not just our members – could access the COVID-19 Symptom Checker because it is important during this time of uncertainty that people can find some answers and also some guidance on when to get care, and where to go for care,” Byers said.

According to Byers, more than 150,000 customers have accessed the highmarkanswers website since its relaunch. The company has also added a virtual assistant – or chatbot – feature to help answer member questions and route members to the right customer service resources. Chatbots are computer programs on websites that use artificial intelligence to mimic conversation with people. Highmark’s application will help answer questions about COVID-19 as well as benefits, coverage and networks.

“For our members, quick access to real-time information is more important than ever. The chatbot is intended to help members quickly get answers to the most pressing questions and route them to the right place for additional support,” said Byers.

For more information, or to use the virtual assistant or symptom checker, go to


Subscribe to the Daily Newsletter