Aetna will now provide some of its largest employer groups with a personalized health program that uses genetic testing and behavioral science to help members address metabolic syndrome, Mobihealthnews reported.
Since metabolic syndrome affects one in four adults in the United States and increases the likelihood of diabetes, stroke and heart disease, preventing the health condition can save insurers substantial costs, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.
Aetna is partnering with Newtopia, a Toronto-based personalized health company, to offer its health engagement platform to create personal nutrition, exercise and behavior management plans for members with metabolic syndrome.
Newtopia's personalized program uses targeted genetic testing as well as personality and lifestyle assessments to determine which individuals are at risk for developing metabolic syndrome. The company then creates a personalized wellness program involving live coaching for nutrition, exercise and behavior management that's available through a mobile tracking system, social health networking, gaming and wearable device integration, reported HIT Consultant.
Aetna and Newtopia already collaborated on a pilot program in 2013 involving Aetna employees who either had or were at risk for metabolic syndrome, according to a previous Aetna statement. Newtopia used genetics and an in-depth client assessment to create personalized plans for each participating employee. The plans helped 85 percent of the participants lose weight and 70 percent reduce their waist size.
"We're very excited about our new collaboration with Newtopia, and its potential to help members address metabolic syndrome in a uniquely personalized way," Greg Steinberg, head of Clinical Innovation at Aetna, said in a statement, according to Mobihealthnews.
Meanwhile, Aetna has updated its popular iTriage app with price transparency information as the insurer focuses less on the app's scale and more on providing new features, Mobihealthnews noted.