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Insurance companies to promote brain wellness

agGiv­en the expect­ed growth of Alzheimer’s dis­ease across the aging US pop­u­la­tion and the cost of patient care, insur­ance com­pa­nies have a strong inter­est in reduc­ing the rate of cog­ni­tive decline, delay­ing the onset of Mild Cog­ni­tive Decline and Alzheimer’s symp­toms and slow­ing the pro­gres­sion of the dis­ease once it appears.

Some insur­ance pio­neers such as Humana and MetLife are exper­i­ment­ing with offer­ing brain fit­ness pro­grams and pro­vid­ing incen­tives to their mem­bers to live health­i­er lifestyles. In 2006 and 2007, Humana rolled out a mul­ti-mil­lion dol­lar agree­ment with Posit Sci­ence to offer Posit’s pro­gram for free or at reduced rates to its Medicare mem­bers.

Insur­ance com­pa­nies are among the lead­ers in dis­sem­i­nat­ing infor­ma­tion about the ben­e­fits of healthy brain habits. In 2005, MetLife pro­duced and dis­trib­uted a brochure on Ten Tips for Main­tain­ing a Healthy Brain.

Despite the lack of prod­uct-spe­cif­ic long-term effi­ca­cy results, insur­ers see the val­ue of adding a brain com­po­nent to well­ness and pre­ven­tion ini­tia­tives from a mem­ber recruit­ment and loy­al­ty point of view.

Keep learn­ing by read­ing more arti­cles in the Resources sec­tion, and also please con­sid­er join­ing our free month­ly Brain Fit­ness eNewslet­ter

This new online resource is based on the con­tent from the book The Sharp­Brains Guide to Brain Fit­ness (May 2009, $19.95), by Alvaro Fer­nan­dez and Dr. Elkhonon Gold­berg.

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As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters, and more, SharpBrains is an independent market research firm and think tank tracking health and performance applications of brain science.