Instead of waiting for doctor visits, Aetna have worked with smartphone technology and developed their new CarePass app in an attempt to revolutionise the way we approach healthcare in the twenty-first century. The app is designed to help Aetna's customers monitor their own healthcare data and to allow them to see the steps required to improve their overall health, thereby reducing their need to wait for visits to the doctor.
Aetna's announcement is just the most recent in a long list of technological disruptions which have shaken up the healthcare industry of late. Certain other notable game-changers, for instance, include startups such as Mango, which reminds patients when they need to take their medication, automatically alerts them to the dangers of interactions between their medication and food and drink, and allows its users to accrue points for following their doctors' orders. This competitive element is seen by many as the cornerstone of Mango's success, as those who garner enough points are rewarded with the chance to win gift cards from big brand names or to make donations to various charities.
However, what makes Carepass stand out from the many other healthcare apps on the market is the fact that it is a tech initiative directly from one of the healthcare giants, Aetna. The company foresee that CarePass could be used to give personalised, intelligent advice to people seeking to achieve new health goals. The envisaged scope of the app is such that it should be able to integrate data from wearable tracking devices, mapping apps, doctors' records, prescriptions, symptom and diagnosis software and food-monitoring apps in order to offer the most detailed suggestions possible.
The company foresee that the app will eventually be used to provide anonymous healthcare data to its users' employees to allow them to monitor overall health trends across their companies. This should, in theory, lead to significant financial savings for insurance companies, employers and employees alike. It's possible that, in the future, insurance companies could incentivize their customers to make use of healthcare apps by offering cheaper premiums for those who use them. CarePass could be an early step in a technological movement that both promotes healthy living and saves money for those who are willing to commit to it.