13 July 2016

Smarter health with smart technology

| Canfan
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As we surpass the “digital age” and head into an era of smart technologies, it will be interesting to see how far technology can go towards increasing our quality of life.

With everything from phones and cars to smoke alarms and coffee pots, smart technology applies brainpower to everyday products; essentially allowing them to “learn” behaviours and act the way we teach them.

But what if we could use smart products to help us in more ways than one? What if we leveraged the technology to save us in other aspects of our lives?

Take insurance for example. We buy car insurance or life and income protection insurance and we get quoted based on the type of lifestyle we fit into. The insurance company can never really know whether we drive as well as Mario Andretti, or boast a body like Michelle Bridges.

And so they quote based on generalisations, and we end up with premiums perhaps a little more than some of us deserve to pay.

But one insurance company has found a unique way around this – employing smart technology to not only gauge how healthy their customers are, but to motivate them to get healthier.

The program is simple. Customers who purchase Income Protection or Life Insurance get a free Basis Peak Smartwatch, and entry into a Wellness Program. If they achieve a set of health targets, they receive a discount on their policy.

Katrina Wybrow who runs Wybrow & Associates, a boutique financial planning firm in Deakin, offers the insurance policy and was really surprised by its ingenuity.

She says, “We rarely come across unique insurance offers, and this one really blew us away. As financial advisers for over 25 years, we have always encouraged our clients to take out some level of insurance to protect themselves and their families’ futures.

“But with this new program you not only get the insurance, but a free smartwatch, access to a Wellness Program that encourages you to be healthier, and (if you reach the targets) up to 10% off your insurance for the life of the policy. It’s amazing – and a definite step towards the future of insurance.”

The Wellness Program requires you to reach a total 900 points within 160 days to achieve a 5% discount. And if you do it again within another 160 days, you get an additional 5% discount.

Reaching 900 points can be achieved by sleeping better, wearing the watch regularly, achieving a good resting heart rate and exercising regularly.

It’s a real indication of things to come. In a world where we have been pigeonholed and generalised in the interest of catering to the masses, it will be interesting to see the changes brought about by technologies that allow us to do more than claim our abilities. Essentially, we’ll be able to demonstrate them.

For more information about the Wellness Program and free Basis Peak Smartwatch, call Wybrow & Associates on 6162 4100 or visit www.advisersforlife.com.au. (Terms & Conditions apply.)

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