11 competitors to Humana’s wellness platform

By: Brian Dolan | Jul 7, 2011        

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EarnditIn February when Humana announced its partial acquisition of South Africa-based Discovery Holdings to take the company’s Vitality wellness platform to the US, it was no surprise that the health plan was making moves to up engagement with its members and move toward wellness services. The surprise was that Humana decided to bring a new platform to the US rather than work with one of the many existing ones already in the market.

Humana’s CSO Paul Kusserow told MobiHealthNews in February that HumanaVitality would include a strong mobile component since that was a key way to drive engagement with consumers, he said. A number of other wellness platforms already feature mobile apps and connected health and fitness devices as core to their offerings — Partners HealthCare spinout Healthrageous may be the most mobilized of the group.

While there are certainly others, we collected a handful of wellness platforms that look to be the incumbents of the market HumanaVitality just entered. Also included is another newcomer: Cerner, which just announced its intent to fill the void created by Google Health’s passing by offering up an employer-focused wellness platform called Cerner Health.

Check out our list of five (UPDATE: now 11) HumanaVitality competitors below and let us know who we missed in the comments section.

KeasKeas

Keas was launched in 2009 by former Google Health head Adam Bosworth. Originally, the idea was similar to the distribution model of Apple’s AppStore — medical experts could create their own health plans to the Keas platform and encourage patients to subscribe to them. If users purchased one of these care plans, Keas would take a cut of the revenue and pass the rest onto the plan’s designers.

Initial launch partners included Healthwise, Google Health, Microsoft HealthVault, Quest Diagnostics and Dr. Alan Greene.

Two years later, that business model has been thrown to the curb. Now, Keas is focused on the workplace, offering “play” focused healthcare programs that reward working out and other healty activities and are collected via a social network interface. The design borrows from Apple, Facebook, and Twitter, including ‘Like’ buttons, a News Feed, social games, and a team aspect that encourages positive peer pressure for staying fit.

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  • http://contextcommunication.com fran melmed

    Nice roundup. Here are a few others I’d add: MeYou Health, which will be entering the field, Limeade, Redbrick Health. Habit Labs is also creating a new product. I wouldn’t be surprised if they eventually had an employer solution. With the $10 mil the HHS is making available to workplace wellness entrepreneurs, I’m sure we’ll be seeing more.

    Fran

  • MobiHealthNews

    Thanks, Fran! I had Habit Labs/Health Month on the list originally. Should add them back in. I’ll add the others, too.

  • http://contextcommunication.com fran melmed

    I’ve been playing Health Month with Susannah Fox and others. We’re the #healthgeeks team. Add yourself! 

    f

  • http://contextcommunication.com fran melmed

    Geez, I left off ShapeUp. They’ve grown substantially. OK, I’ll stop now. 
    f

  • http://twitter.com/rememberitnow RememberItNow!

    Hi Brian,  

    Agreed, this is a nice roundup. Another great wellness platform for the list is ours, RememberItNow! – http://www.RememberItNow.com 

    RememberItNow! is a mobile, patient-centric eHealth platform that helps people manage their health through:

    - Free medication reminders, refill and even reminders via SMS, email or Push
    - Wellness feedback and Tips 
    - Biometric and Automatic Wellness Tracking
    - Personalized Health Information 
    - A Complete Contact Database 
    - A Private Health Care Vault 
    - A Private Care Community (to share health care updates with family, friends, and health care professionals. Users can invite and set up privilege levels for up to 20 members.)
    - And a Comprehensive Personal Health Record. 

    Users can get started fast and free at http://www.RememberItNow.com
    Hope all is well and maybe we’ll see you at the next mobile health conference!

    Cheers,

    Alex Bettencourt
    Marketing Manager
    ABettencourt@RememberItNow.com(925) 254 – 8936 
    Let’s connect:http://twitter.com/rememberitnowhttp://www.linkedin.com/in/alexbettencourtDownload: “How to Profit from the Mobile Health Revolution” – CLICK HERE

  • http://twitter.com/RajivKumarMD Rajiv Kumar, M.D.

    Great article, and very timely. Thanks for bringing attention to this important and growing industry.

  • RussK

    earndit is great.  I’ve earned plenty of rewards and they use myriad consumer devices to track actual activity. I used Health month twice, but there is very little there in terms of rewards or accuracy, people can simply lie.  Earnd it uses equipment like Fitbit, GPS, Nike+, and smartphone apps for social networks based on GPS like foursquare and Runkeeper.

  • http://matthewtendler.tumblr.com/ Matthew Tendler

    Brian,

    Is there any way you can follow up with these companies to see how sticky their app actually is? I’d be very interested to see some of their metrics and not just how many downloads they have. In particular, you may want to ask for some of the following:
    Average downloads per day in the first week
    Average downloads per day this week
    How many profiles are being created daily (preferably a ratio – downloads:profile creation)
    What percent are coming back after first use?
    If there is “friending” how many friends does each user have?
    What is the app’s DAU (Daily Active User) : MAU (Monthly Active User) Ratio (although this could be slightly flawed because patients might not be expected to participate everyday)

  • MobiHealthNews

    @RussK The “lying” issue is an interesting one — especially when rewards are at play. People have been attaching pedometers to their pets for years to earn rewards or make good on employee wellness goals supposedly. I assume most of these platforms ignore this issue. Be curious to find out if that’s true.

  • MobiHealthNews

    Thanks, Matt. Good questions — I’ll see if any are willing to answer them.

  • MobiHealthNews

    Joined HM and found your team. I’m a week late though — I don’t want to let the team down!

  • Jfey2006

    USPM and The Prevention Plan is the leading brand in the US and UK for health promotion, watch this: http://www.youtube.com/thepreventionchannel#p/u/8/Rdu8v4ZGQko

  • fran melmed

    The answer depends on the company and the way the employer implements it. I’m sure the companies mentioned here will answer, but I can add some perspective. Companies with a primary focus on increasing movement use USB pedometers to track data. Other companies use the honor system but are part of an employer’s larger wellness effort. In this case, the employer may use something like meeting biometric standards to dole out rewards. Or these online social games will only be one element in a broader points-based system that includes completing a health risk assessment or a weight management program, etc. The rewards are connected to the overall effort.

    f

  • RussK

    I never even thought of that. Sad people, but I can see how it could be done, at least with one of  the devices I use.  I hope their dog is just a normal house dog and just as lazy as its owner.  I dont know why someone would spend money on such a device and not use it the right way; they are missing out on all of the fun they could be having.

  • Jennifer Turgiss

    Good overview Brian – I would add IncentOne and IncentaHealth are others in the marketplace

  • Dave

    Brian, I think the use of the term “platform” here is not accurate since few of any of these examples are truly “platforms” in the technical sense (Earndit might qualify, but Healthmonth, Keas, and many others here don’t and notably someone like RunKeeper who is actually trying to build a platform do qualify but aren’t included strangely).

    If you meant to say “applications”, then there are certainly far, far more than just 11.  So, I’m a little lost on the purpose of this article now that I look at it more carefully…

  • http://www.walkingspree.com Lisa

    I’m surprised Walkingspree wasn’t mentioned here as they have several fortune 500 companies as clients including Blue Cross Blue Shields of Michigan as a client. They’re similar to Virgin Healthmiles and Shape Up offering a pedometer program platform but focused on client customization.

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