This post was originally published on the Fitbit press site. It has been adapted from its original format.
Fujitsu FIP Corporation is planning to provide 10,000 insured members of Mitsubishi Motors Health Insurance Society with a service to manage health points using wearable devices and data from Fitbit, the parent company of Fitbit Japan.
This is a cloud-type service provided by converting and accumulating activity volume data collected by wearable devices and each user’s health and medical check-up information held by the Health Insurance Society general information system to health points on a cloud-based point system. This works to support insured members' health with data and incentives. The service is scheduled to start in October 2017.
In recent years, suppression of the increase in medical expenses and nursing care expenses due to the aging of the population is an urgent issue in Japan. As a result, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare announced in May 2016 "Guidelines for Initiatives to Provide Incentives for Individual Prevention and Health Promotion." These guidelines promote the creation of an environment in which health insurance providers can offer incentives to insurance holders, leading to improved health, and in this way, even those who are indifferent to their health can find it easy to constantly better their health.
In response to this, more and more health insurance associations and municipalities are working on "health point systems" which give points to those who exercised or had checkups, and exchanges the points for incentives such as goods and gift cards. On the other hand, in organizations that actually introduce health point systems, there is a problem that participation in the system is biased towards the level of interest in health and does not spread to indifferent people.
Under such circumstances, Mitsubishi Motors Health Insurance Society was considering a health point system that appeals for more insured people to participate, and has now decided to adopt a service to manage health points that combines Fujitsu FIP’s cloud-type point system, Fitbit’s wearable devices and data, as well as the general information system provided by Fujitsu FIP currently used by the Health Insurance Society.
This service converts activity volume data taken wearing the Fitbit device, as well as actual data from thorough medical screenings or and recreation center use and converts and aggregates into health points, which can then be exchanged for incentives such as gift cards to support insured people’s health. Fujitsu FIP’s cloud-type point system, the base of this service, has a generic interface that enables seamless connections with other systems. Since each type of data is automatically captured, it is possible for the insured person to accumulate health points without needing to enter data on their own.
Chart illustrating how service helps manage health points
From April 2017, prior to the start of the "health point system" in October, Mitsubishi Motors Health Insurance Society began accepting wearable device applications from among its insurance holders who wished to use the service. Due to the function and design of sophisticated Fitbit devices and the ease of use of the mechanism that accumulates points automatically, there have been applications for participation from approximately 10,000 employees, more than two thirds of all insured persons, to date.
The data being provided by Fitbit Japan will help Fujitsu FIP better support the health and management of the organization by providing each individual with a structure that easily promotes health.
About the cloud-type point system
Fujitsu FIP’s cloud-type point system service provides required functions for point card issuing companies. In addition to basic functions such as registration of membership and point management, there is a function to give bonus points according to membership rank based on membership registration, member's birthday, monthly usage record, and other features to promote admission and activation of members' willingness to purchase. This system has been introduced by a wide range of customers, from apparel companies and supermarkets to financial institutions and public transportation customers who require a higher level of reliability.
About the Health Insurance Society general information system
It is a comprehensive information system developed by Fujitsu FIP for the purpose of improving work efficiency at the Health Insurance Society, utilizing information accumulated every day. It is possible to freely configure the processing capacity of the server and the number of clients according to customer scale, and it is easy to increase clients at scale expansion.
About the wearable device “Fitbit”
Fitbit, the leading global wearables brand, is a wristband and portable-type wearable device that tracks data such as steps, heart rate, sleep, exercise, meals, calories burned, and can be managed as everyday activity on a smartphone or online through www.fitbit.com. It can connect to a special application compatible with smartphones, and offers self-management of various activity data.
Fitbit app shown on cell phone screen
Tetsuya Kawarazaki, Chief Director, Mitsubishi Motors Health Insurance Society
Our Health Insurance Society has been making efforts in maintaining and promoting the health of insured persons since its establishment.
This "health point system" will focus on the insured members, and thanks to Fujitsu FIP's excellent solution capability and Fitbit's attractive fitness wearable device, I am grateful to both companies for building a mechanism that creates interest among our insured members.
In considering the mechanism, we have been discussing with Fujitsu FIP about how to thoroughly eliminate the bothersome hurdles to participation, such as understanding and registering health points, and the ease of continued use and appealing incentives that will lead to raising health awareness. We are pleased that the applications, accepted from this April, for these wearable watch devices that are a tool for understanding health points (walking steps), exceeded our initial expectations and got off to a good start as we look to the launch of the health point system in October.
I would like to support the active health promotion of insured people by the "health incentive business" which started from this fiscal year, centering on this service in the future.