How Big Data and IoT Is Helping This Healthcare Insurance Provider

If you had the chance to lower your health insurance premiums or to receive incentives for behaving healthily, would you do it? Vitality Health is counting on your answer being “yes.” By using technology such as big data and IoT this healthcare insurance provider can track and reward their customers’ exercise and eating habits.

Owned by Discovery Holdings, a global insurance provider with 4.4 million clients, Vitality Health is the first insurance company to reward people for healthy living. The company offers health and life insurance. The goal of this shared-value system is to improve the health of the insured by providing health insights from data, give rewards for good behavior, and keep premiums and costs low.

IoT Technology and Data-Driven Approach to Promote Healthier Behavior

Technology and data are essential to Vitality’s approach. First, a member’s baseline health is assessed by taking into consideration lifestyle behaviors such as smoking, alcohol consumption, and eating habits along with biometric measures including height, weight, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels. From this data, the member’s Vitality Age is determined; in the United States, 79% of people surveyed have a higher Vitality Age than their biological age.

Next, Vitality creates a Personal Pathway plan for each member to improve their Vitality Age by using the data collected in the assessment and determining a personalized plan to making healthier choices. The company provides tools, resources, and partners that offer discounted services to Vitality members to support their health journey.

By using integrated data feeds from its partners including its network gyms, biometric screening service providers plus more than 100 wearable technologies including the Apple Watch, Vitality can check a member’s progress toward the established health goals in real-time. For example, Apple Health from the Apple Watch can connect to the Vitality Member app, that allows members to set up video consultations with a GP, schedule appointments, get referrals to specialists and find trusted health information. By doing so, members can earn Vitality Points for how many steps they take and the heart rate information from workouts their Apple Watch tracks.

Next Steps for Big Data and IoT to Promote Healthy Lifestyles

As other insurance providers determine ways to use data and technology to help them provide incentives for healthy behavior, Vitality Health will face increased competition. Vitality Health and others in the space will look to expand health monitoring technology and grapple with other concerns such as privacy, how to deal with biological differences that make some members predisposed to being healthier or experience better outcomes than others for similar activity, and more.

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