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Health care provider Aetna might buy you an Apple Watch

By Shawn Knight
Sep 27, 2016
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  1. Smartwatches, especially higher-end models, are a tough sell as many can’t justify parting with several hundred bucks for what more or less amounts to a toy. But, if your health insurance provider was willing to foot some of the cost, would you be interested in giving a smartwatch a shot?

    That’s the proposition that health insurance provider Aetna put on the table Tuesday.

    In partnership with Apple, Aetna this fall will make the Apple Watch available to select employers and individual customers during its open enrollment season. Aetna said it’ll become the first major health care company to subsidize a significant portion of the cost of an Apple Watch and offer monthly payroll deductions to help pay for the remaining balance of the wearable.

    Aetna said it will also be supplying its nearly 50,000 employees with an Apple Watch free of charge so long as they participate in their wellness reimbursement program.

    With help from Apple, the health care company is planning several iOS-exclusive apps that’ll be ready in early 2017. Examples mentioned include apps to help users remember to take medications and order refills, provide guides to those with a new diagnosis and help users check their deductible / pay a bill.

    The idea here is that, by providing users with a fitness tracking device like the Apple Watch for free or at a lower price, members will be encouraged to live healthier lives which in turn, saves Aetna money in the long run by not having to pay out claims for those in poor health that may visit the doctor frequently or require a lot of medication each month.

    An Aetna spokesperson told CNET that employers should be able to offer an Apple Series 1 or Series 2 device “at low or no cost to employees.” How that translates into the real world, however, remains to be seen although it’s hard to fault the effort as it seems like a win-win for everyone involved.

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  2. yRaz

    yRaz TS Evangelist Posts: 1,897   +940

    I'd rather have lower premiums, thank you
     
    MonsterZero, Wendig0, BSim500 and 2 others like this.
  3. BSim500

    BSim500 TS Guru Posts: 197   +270

    Last time I checked blood pressure monitors were $30. Blood sugar level monitor kits (early Diabetes warning) around the same. Neither need wearing constantly. You don't need any expensive device to tell you to exercise more, that's just another "I'd like to become more healthy but I'm just waiting for..." excuse to avoid exercising and buy a new toy as a crude "substitute".

    Smart watches in general have very little to do with "saving money" regardless of peripheral exercise features. Nor does buying exercise equipment first then hoping it will incite interest make you exercise more long term. That's like saying "wearing huge pants makes you fat". You buy keep fit equipment after you become interested, it rarely works the other way around once the first 2-3 week novelty of buying a new toy has worn off. That's why garages are filled with treadmills / exercise bikes, etc, that sit unused for years whilst people seriously interested often own nothing more than a decent pair of running shoes and a $5 stopwatch / pedometer.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016
    wastedkill likes this.
  4. commanderasus

    commanderasus TS Enthusiast Posts: 52   +9

    Where are all the studies that say these watches are actually safe to wear? You are wearing a computer right over top your veins that carry blood to every part of of your body. I don't need any technology to tell me how fit I am nor do I need more tests done by more technology just to tell me "I am within normal parameters". What happened to common sense?
     
  5. RustyTech

    RustyTech TS Guru Posts: 865   +434

    Holy mother! Do you guys see where this is going?
    'oh, you ate a burger? ...you're health insurance premiums just went up by a dollar'
    'oh, you didn't go to the gym? ..another $5.'

    You guys just watch (no pun intended) this is exactly where this is going!
     
    MonsterZero and Wendig0 like this.
  6. Wendy Oltman

    Wendy Oltman TS Booster Posts: 128   +16

    If they can pay their bills, that wold suffice instead of buying Apple watches..
     
  7. Wendig0

    Wendig0 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,106   +97

    I was thinking the same thing.
     
  8. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 1,660   +767

    Geezzzeeeeee ..... for the kind of money they charge now for health insurance they should give you the watch, the PC, and a three week vacation at a fat farm ......
     
  9. MonsterZero

    MonsterZero TS Addict Posts: 227   +88

    It's like that dongle you plug into your car to lower your car insurance. LOL nice try...
     
  10. Wendy Oltman

    Wendy Oltman TS Booster Posts: 128   +16

    What are you living in, in a fantasy land or something? The yearly rise in prenups is enough to send some body in hospital out of depression.
     
  11. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 1,660   +767

    Cheaper to just bury them ....
     
  12. Wendy Oltman

    Wendy Oltman TS Booster Posts: 128   +16

    Or even that may incur a cost (pun) :oops:
     

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