Aetna Offering Apple Watch, Health Apps to Consumers

Aetna will offer subsidies for consumers to purchase an Apple Watch.

Aetna recently announced plans to offer Apple Watches to certain customers, and create novel iOS-exclusive health applications to improve health experiences and promote healthier lifestyles.

This new initiative will pair iOS apps and apple products with Aetna’s analytics-based wellness and care management programs, according to a press release. Certain large employers and individuals will be eligible to receive subsidies for an Apple Watch during open enrollment.

What is not covered by the subsidy will be deducted from payroll monthly. All Aetna employees involved in the company’s reimbursement program will receive the watch at no cost, according to Aetna.

Providing the watch to nearly 50,000 employees reinforces the importance Aetna places on being active, according to a press release. The company will also be working closely with Apple products to create iOS-exclusive health applications, and other initiatives to improve the ease of managing health and outcomes.

The apps will also offer simplification of the health process, according to Aetna.

“We are incredibly excited to use iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch to create simple, intuitive and personalized technology solutions that will transform the health and wellness experience for our members,” said Mark Bertolini, Aetna chairman and CEO. “This is only the beginning - we look forward to using these tools to improve health outcomes and help more people achieve more healthy days.”

These iOS-exclusive apps aim to improve care management and wellness by helping consumers through situations, such as a new diagnoses or different prescription drug. Consumers will be able to access user-driven support from nurses and other consumers.

The apps will also drive medication adherence, and will allow consumers to easily order refills, stay connected with their physician, and will provide medication reminders. It will also be integrated with Apple Wallet so that consumers can easily pay their bill.

Other features include personalized health plan on-boarding, information, messaging and decision support, according to Aetna. Aetna says these apps will be available early next year.

“We are thrilled that Aetna will be helping their members and employees take greater control of their health using Apple Watch," said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “Aetna’s new initiatives will be a powerful force toward creating better customer experiences in health care, and we look forward to working with Aetna to make them successful.”