Focusing on Disease Prevention Can Benefit Individuals and Health Insurers - A New Approach to Healthcare

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The following post was written and/or published as a collaboration between Benzinga’s in-house sponsored content team and a financial partner of Benzinga.

There’s an old saying that goes, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” meaning it’s easier to prevent something from happening in the first place than to try and fix it after the fact. That holds true for many things in life and is advice that can arguably be applied directly to one’s own health and the health of businesses as well. 

While this doesn’t mean that every illness or ailment can be prevented, steps can be taken to change an individual's habits and give the human body and mind the best possible chance to stave off the progression of chronic conditions or even prevent their occurrence in the first place.

Knowing the proper steps to prevent, slow, and reverse chronic disease can overwhelm even the most health-conscious individuals. For that, a knowledgeable guide and toolkit of resources are invaluable to anyone willing to bring positive change to their lives. One of those resources is Newtopia NEWUF NEWU, a tech-enabled habit change provider.

The Whole Person Approach

Newtopia is unlike any other telehealth or habit change tool available on the market today. The company’s one-size-fits-one whole-person approach focuses on the individual at risk, building that person’s confidence, physical and mental wellbeing over time to develop long-term habit change. Newtopia’s proven capabilities are evidence-based and grounded in science and have received full recognition from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Newtopia leverages the best of human – its health coaches or Inspirators – with the best of digital – its proprietary HIPAA-compliant technology platform and data analytics – to incrementally change habits around nutrition, exercise, and mental wellbeing. By leveraging the genetic profile of the individual, coupled with their social habits and behavioral insights, Newtopia develops a personalized prevention program for each participant that combines virtual care, digital tools, connected devices (wearables, digital scales), and actionable data science. 

Newtopia’s clients represent a substantial addressable market including self-insured employers (~140 million people), private insurers (~100 million people), and public health / government healthcare providers (~138 million people). The company’s client portfolio includes very well-known brands such as CVS Health CVS, JPMorgan Chase JPM, and Accenture ACN, who believe investing in their workers is essential to the long-term financial success of their companies.

Although Newtopia’s focus has been on type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and obesity, the changes in habits that are suggested through the program can also have a positive impact on a person’s mental health, soothe other chronic conditions, and improve overall resilience. This innovative whole-person approach – the concept that physical and mental wellbeing are linked – has arguably become even more important as a result of COVID-19.

How it Works

It all begins with meeting individuals at a point of concern with their health during the onboarding process. Using biometric testing and online health assessment tools, Newtopia identifies the risk eligibility of individuals. Candidates are then matched with an Inspirator and the right smart technology which together walks them through the recommended steps towards habit change - whether that be new exercise routines, dietary changes, or methods to improve and enhance mental health. Through virtual coaching sessions, simple tracking, gaming, and a curated social health community, participants work to meet incremental goals to change everyday habits and improve their overall health. By forming deep and lasting participant relationships, Newtopia is also able to offer curation of other available health benefits and deliver greater adherence to its program.

The ultimate goal is to lead each individual to a healthier place which could mean fewer trips to the doctor or emergency room, reduced reliance on medication, and more opportunities to enjoy life. Newtopia’s platform not only improves health but also saves money for health insurers through reduced health insurance costs. For instance, a healthy individual incurs ~$3,400 a year in medical expenses. With one or two risk factors such as elevated weight, blood pressure, or glucose, those expenses increase to $5,400 a year. Once someone reaches the chronic category, medical costs can be upwards of $15,000 to $20,000 or more. That is a massive unmanaged liability for health insurers.

A Win-Win Business Opportunity

Today 90% of America’s $4.0 trillion of annual healthcare costs paid for by health insurers are attributed to individuals with chronic and mental health conditions. But, what if we could reduce this figure? Newtopia does just that by limiting healthcare costs for individuals, employers, and insurance providers. The cost savings positively impact all three groups. With the world still facing a massive pandemic, healthcare costs continue to skyrocket and the time to find ways to reduce such costs is now.  

Newtopia’s cost savings and return on investment to health insurers, including self-insured employers, private and government health plans, have been proven time and time again. In a randomized controlled trial conducted in conjunction with Aetna, Newtopia’s program showed a yearly cost savings of just under $1,500 per employee. In another study conducted with Medicare Advantage participants, cost savings totaled $1,700 per individual per year. These findings demonstrate that if a company chooses to partner with Newtopia for its workforce as a benefit, it may be likely to result in a healthier employee or member population and drive significant savings.

Are you curious about how much a company could save by providing its employees the opportunity to improve their physical and mental health and decrease chronic disease occurrences? Use this calculator to find out.

The Bigger Picture

As we continue to weather the global pandemic, we are seeing a considerable surge in the number of chronic disease cases, leaving health insurers and the insured to pick up the pieces. Newtopia is aiming to turn the healthcare industry on its side, to stop monetizing sickness and instead invest in long-term habit change.  When people change their habits, they can change their lives and the lives of those around them. Coming together and taking a proactive approach to individuals’ health can have long-lasting benefits for all individuals and health insurers. 

Opportunity to Learn More

Interested in learning more about Newtopia? Founder and CEO Jeff Ruby will be presenting next week at Benzinga’s Healthcare Conference at 3:20 PM ET on Thursday, September 30th. Mr. Ruby will also be available to host investor meetings throughout the day. You can learn more about the event here

 

The preceding post was written and/or published as a collaboration between Benzinga’s in-house sponsored content team and a financial partner of Benzinga. Although the piece is not and should not be construed as editorial content, the sponsored content team works to ensure that any and all information contained within is true and accurate to the best of their knowledge and research. This content is for informational purposes only and not intended to be investing advice.

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