Health insurance firm Aetna is relying on the power of the Apple Watch to drive its brand new wellness program called Attain. Aetna’s new opt-in initiative will offer participants real world rewards in exchange for healthy behavior, and Aetna will rely on data captured securely and privately with the Apple Watch to measure participant progress. Aetna’s new Attain wellness initiative marks the first time the Apple Watch has been used at this scale to power a program of this type with an emphasis on convenience and privacy.

Aetna says the new Attain program is based in part on the experience from the firm’s earlier experience with using the Apple Watch to promote healthy living. While the program is officially being announced today, the Attain app behind the experience is due later this spring:

Aetna, a CVS Health (NYSE:CVS) business, announced the launch of Attain, a unique health experience designed by Aetna in collaboration with Apple. Through the use of an Apple Watch, the Attain app will provide Aetna members personalized goals, track their daily activity levels, recommend healthy actions, and ultimately reward them for taking these actions to improve their well-being. Reward opportunities include the ability for eligible users to earn their Apple Watch through their participation in the program.

The Attain program will work with the iPhone 5s and later when paired with the Apple Watch Series 1 or later.

Aetna says its upcoming Attain program is designed around four aspects. First, Aetna will set customized daily and weekly activity goals for each participant  based on age, sex, and weight, and thanks to the Apple Watch, those goals won’t be limited to step tracking but instead will include other activities like yoga and swimming.

Attain will also be based on regular challenges focused on improving sleep, mindfulness, and nutritional improvements as part of a measurement of everyday health. The privacy-focused, opt-in program will also incorporate Aetna member health history in addition to data captured by the Apple Watch. This information can include positive activities like remembering to get your flu shoot and maintaining regular visits with your primary care physician.

Finally, Attain will show progress through the program for participants with a simple to understand point system that can easily be viewed on the iPhone. Points accumulated can be exchanged for credit toward the cost of the Apple Watch or for retail gift cards.

Apple will also play a role in the program if Aetna customers decide to share insights with the company:

After users have joined Attain, they will have the additional option to share their Attain program data and health history with Apple, enabling Apple and Aetna to collaborate, and over time, continue to improve the Attain experience. Through analytics and machine learning, the collaboration will lead to new features for Attain, offering more personalized recommendations designed to give greater context and decrease barriers to health care.

Apple’s COO Jeff Williams who is heavily involved in Apple Watch and health initiatives at Apple had this to say:

“We believe that people should be able to play a more active role in managing their well-being. Every day, we receive emails and letters from people all over the world who have found great benefit by incorporating Apple Watch into their lives and daily routines,” said Jeff Williams, Apple’s COO. “As we learn over time, the goal is to make more customized recommendations that will help members accomplish their goals and live healthier lives.”

Aetna emphasizes that Attain will be completely voluntary, with customers opting-in to participate, and data shared through the program will remain encrypted and in compliance with HIPAA standards. Check out for more details.

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About the Author

Zac Hall

Zac covers Apple news, hosts the 9to5Mac Happy Hour podcast, and created