International Hospitals & Healthcare

Aetna believes the future is holistic, personalised care

Targeting individuals concept

Global health provider Aetna International has released a new paper that examines the role of behavioural and genetic data in detecting and preventing disease. Bespoke health promotion: How personalisation is transforming health examines the importance of bringing together health and lifestyle data with advances in genetic profiling and technology to help tackle the rising global disease burden.

The company believes the future of healthcare lies in the worldwide adoption of a more predictive, preventative, personalised and participatory approach to health; one that enables people to be more actively involved in their own health and wellbeing. It also said that although genetics are a lesser factor than scientists once thought, they, along with individual behaviour, must be taken into consideration when determining the best approach to reducing the rising global disease epidemic.

“We are extremely interested in the potential to use genomic data as part of an overall appraisal of a person’s health status. That way, we can work with them to agree the best care pathway and hopefully prevent the onset of inflammation or disease.  A critical step in determining the best treatment is a holistic view of the patient – their symptoms, family history, circumstances and biomarkers – combined with expert guidance from a geneticist and the provision of genetic counselling for the patient. Technology such as wearables can also support a pre-emptive health approach by helping individuals make healthy choices. However, it is important to recognise that while some individuals will respond to a chatbot, others will respond better to social and physical intervention,” said Caroline Pain, Senior Vice-President, Customer Proposition, Aetna International.

Aetna International believes delivering hyper-personalised health journeys will help to increase healthy outcomes at an individual level and will make disease care radically more cost-effective at a population level.