Apple rumored to be in talks with Medicare Advantage plans

Apple is in talks with at least three Medicare Advantage (MA) plans to bring its watch technology to at-risk seniors, according to a report from CNBC. Reportedly, there is potential for the watches to be subsidized for the MA enrollees who can’t afford the $279 price tag to use the device as a health tracker.

The newer version of the Apple Watch retails for a minimum of $399.

Apple Watch, which comes with a built-in EKG feature, is already being used in studies to monitor the health of patients. Health insurer Aetna also recently launched a new AI-based app in collaboration with Apple Watch to track and incentivize enrollees to improve their health.

The report appears at a time when MA plans are on the cusp of being granted more flexibilities with respect to the supplemental benefits they can offer plan members in 2020.

While no deals have been struck, Apple has visited with some of the largest MA plans as well as smaller, venture-back plans, CNBC reported. About 19 million seniors are enrolled in MA plans, and the sector is expected to continue growing rapidly over the next several years.

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