For the first time in the U.S., an insurer is using the same idea as pay as you drive coverage, but for a person’s health.
A life insurance company in the United States is now offering a service that represents a first for the country, in which wearing a tracker that will reveal an individual’s health, location, and body information to reveal healthy lifestyle habits and reduced risk opportunities that could bring about a discount for premiums.
While some are seeing this as an interesting opportunities, others are calling this an invasion of privacy.
People are using wearable technology such as fitness trackers at a rapidly growing rate. These devices count daily steps like a pedometer, as well as measure heart rate, body movements, and other types of data relating to activity. The John Hancock life insurance company is now offering its customers a discount on their premiums of up to 15 percent if the device wearers show that they are regularly active in a healthy way.
The life insurance company launched its new tracker based discount program as of last week.
In order to offer this optional new program, John Hancock has partnered with Vitality. That company provides wellness programs to employees and runs in thirty different states.
People who sign up for this insurance discount program receive a Fitbit tracker for free. This little device must then be worn as a bracelet. It will track the distance that a wearer walks or runs, will estimate the number of calories that have been burned, and will even gauge the quality of the wearer’s sleep.
What this means is that the insurance company will be able to tell how often a customer does a workout, how far he or she walks, how often exercises are skipped, and whether or not the wearer is getting a decent amount of sleep.
Should the customer show that he or she keeps up a regular healthful lifestyle, then points are earned which produce the opportunity to save on a silver, gold, or platinum level. The healthier an individual’s lifestyle, the greater the potential discount on the life insurance premiums.