Fitbit expands offerings to new employers, health plans

NEW YORK — Fitbit is continuing to take steps to expand its offerings for both employers and health plan clients.

The company — which recently released new wearable devices, the Inspire and Inspire HR, designed exclusively for corporate and health plan clients — said Wednesday that Adobe, Domino’s Pizza and Limeade are among the employers who are now offering the devices to employees.

The Inspire and Inspire HR are also offered to members through 100 health plans, including providers UnitedHealthcare and Humana, Fitbit said during a meeting with reporters in New York.

Integrated benefit network Solera Health will also be making Fitbit’s newest wearable devices available to all of its diabetes prevention program participants including Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, the company said Wednesday. Solera has more than 100,000 individuals enrolled in its diabetes prevention program.

See also: Fitbit launches wearables for employers, health plans

“Our ability to empower, inspire and insight behavior change is really applicable to a healthcare setting,” said Amy McDonough, chief operating officer of Fitbit Health Solutions. “Whether you’re working on eating better, getting better quality sleep or tracking your level of activity, those are all very applicable to a healthcare setting. We designed our Inspire and Inspire HR [devices] with health plans first in mind.”

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Lifestyle photo of Fitbit Inspire.,,Photographer: Chris Ozer.,Actual capture date: 9/5/18

Solera has been working with Fitbit since 2017, offering other Fitbit devices to plan participants. The company conducted an analysis with 1,700 participants enrolled its program and found that those who used wearables lost a larger percentage of their starting weight and were more active than non-Fitbit participants. McDonough told Employee Benefit News that employers and health plans have a big responsibility providing health benefits to workers.

“It’s connecting those dots on how wellness solutions support benefits goals,” she said.

As part of its employer wellness offerings, the company also released Fitbit Care, a wellness platform for employers and employees, late last year. With employee consent, employers can use the platform to view individual steps, distance and active minutes for individual workers, McDonough said. They can also see aggregated sleep data — although that information is not available on an individual basis.

Employers including BP and and Emory University have had success with wearable programs in the past. Incorporating wearable technology into a wellness program can provide employers with data about where they can make the biggest impact on the health of their employee population, according to a case study from Springbuk.
Employees who opted to use a wearable cost on average $1,242 less than non-wearable users, Springbuk found.

Fitbit will be making the Inspire and Inspire HR devices available to consumers, expanding beyond the initial health plan and employer market. They also released two additional wearables, the Versa Lite smartwatch and the Ace 2, for children ages six and up. McDonough said the new offerings can help to improve the overall health and engagement of workers over time.

“This is just a really fantastic example of using proactive healthcare solutions to help integrate and find better healthcare outcomes and better results,” McDonough said.

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