Devoted Health says it is the first private Medicare provider to offer the Apple Watch as a fitness option, providing its members with up to $150 to put towards an Apple Watch model. Apple sells the Apple Watch Series 3 for as little as $199.
Plans from Devoted Health now list a $150 per year benefit in "Wellness Bucks" that can be put towards classes, programs, and "wearable devices like an Apple Watch" with the aim of offering members options to "keep healthy outside of the doctor's office."
"We are pleased that CMS agrees that there is a wide variety of ways that older Americans can keep healthy, including fitness and nutrition classes, and activity monitoring devices such as the Apple Watch," said Devoted Health spokesman Kenneth Baer. "We are thrilled to be the first Medicare Advantage plan to collaborate with Apple, and give our members the chance to use their Devoted Health Wellness bucks towards purchasing an Apple Watch. Using innovative technologies to improve the quality of care is core to our mission."According to CNBC, Apple has been talking with companies like Devoted Health "for months" about subsidizing the cost of the Apple Watch, with Medicare Advantage plans potentially offering an untapped market for Apple, allowing the company to get its devices in the hands of more senior users.
CNBC contacted other Medicare Advantage plans that said they are also considering offering the Apple Watch as a fitness benefit in the future.