Apple to launch 'AC Wellness' clinics for employees in spring, centers will serve as testi...

Posted:
in General Discussion edited March 11
Apple this spring will launch a network of health clinics under the "AC Wellness" banner, with the independent health centers initially dedicated to servicing company employees and their families.




Citing people familiar with Apple's plans, CNBC reports the company is looking to build out AC Wellness as a primary care solution for employees based in California.

While details have yet to be made public by Apple, a website for the health clinic network recently went live and touts a spring 2018 launch date. The site's landing page points directly to Apple, saying, "AC Wellness is an independent medical practice dedicated to delivering compassionate, effective healthcare to the Apple employee population."

According to information published to job search site Indeed.com, AC Wellness Network, LLC. is a subsidiary of Apple that manages an independent medical group under the same name. The group is tasked with serving Apple employees through Apple Wellness Centers in Santa Clara Valley, and will open "multiple, stunning state-of-the-art medical centers" in the area. At least one will be located at Apple Park, according to a LinkedIn job listing.

AC Wellness Network's business address places the LLC's headquarters at Apple's Valley Green complex, which is located across the street from the firm's One Infinite Loop campus in Cupertino. Interestingly, the operation appears to be run out of a building in Valley Green 2 next to the Apple Fitness Center.

As noted on its website, technology will play a large role in delivering high-quality care and a "unique" experience to AC Wellness patients.

"This is fostered by an environment of continuous learning and teamwork, which in turn allows us to work with our patients to achieve exceptional health outcomes," the site reads. "The centers offer a unique concierge-like healthcare experience for employees and their dependents."

A jobs listing page on ACWellness.com reveals posts seeks applicants for a primary care doctor, exercise coach, "care navigator" and phlebotomist for on-site lab tests. Other jobs posted to Indeed.com include a medical coder, nurse coordinator, nurse practitioner, health educator and more. Many of the job listings have been viewable on Indeed.com, Glassdoor.com and LinkedIn for more than a month.

A number of positions fall outside of what industry professionals would consider traditional medicine. For example, the Population Health Program Designer and Clinical Program Designer roles will work together to create new health programs targeting disease prevention, early detection of diseases, ongoing management of chronic diseases and general promotion of healthy lifestyles.

Apple's medical clinics will not only provide coverage to employees, but also serve as a testing ground for the company's quickly growing lineup of health-related products and services, the report said.

Currently, Apple Watch with its heart rate monitor and built in sensor array stands as Apple's flagship health device, while connected products such as HealthKit, ResearchKit and CareKit provide data collection and portability services. Other special programs like the Heart Study, accomplished in partnership with Stanford, provide insight into future hardware capabilities.

Most recently, Apple last month announced the forthcoming iOS 11.3 update will include options for healthcare providers to integrate health records within the Health app, allowing users to share information with their doctors, receive alerts and more. So far, 12 U.S. hospitals have pledged support for the feature.

News of AC Wellness arrives months after reports claimed Apple was considering the purchase of Crossover, an in-house clinic startup that counts Apple and Facebook among its customers. Sources said Apple began informing third-party providers, presumedly Crossover and others, about the coming switch to AC Wellness this week, according to the report.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 22
    I bet $100 that "AC" stands for "All Clear".

  • Reply 2 of 22
    I bet $100 that "AC" stands for "All Clear".

    ... or maybe “Apple Care”, extending that existing brand to include human care (thus the “Wellness” suffix).
    airnerdjony0
  • Reply 3 of 22
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 2,529moderator
    I bet $100 that "AC" stands for "All Clear".

    ... or maybe “Apple Care”, extending that existing brand to include human care (thus the “Wellness” suffix).
    Hmmm, Apple Core Wellness.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 4 of 22
    My company has this. A small clinic on our corporate campus. It provides services for minor injuries/illness, annual physicals, biometric screenings, mental health, wellness coaching etc. My guess is apple.com Wellness will be something similar.
  • Reply 5 of 22
    This is exciting to me... 
    This is America's first attempt at creating an actual HealthCare system.
    Right now we have a $3trillion/year DiseaseCare system that confuses disease prevention with disease treatment (and no, contrary to what our DiseaseCare system tells us, early detection is not prevention).

    As described, the centers will promote public and individual health through healthy lifestyles as much and possibly more than treatment of diseases.  And we need that:
    Aside from the way true, actual prevention can benefit individuals it has been credibly estimated that 3/4's of our $3T/yr healthcare spending goes to "treat" chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and cancer.  But, it has also been credibly estimated that 3/4's of those diseases could be eliminated through a health lifestyle.    Essentially, that means that fully half of our national spending on healthcare goes to treat diseases that should have never happened had the person lived a healthy lifestyle!

    Chronic diseases cause immeasurable pain and suffering to the people of this country and treating them is bankrupting the nation.  This could be yet another Apple initiative that change people's lives...

    I am excited.
    Apple could do more for the health of this nation than all the political solutions rolled up together.

    Added:  The emphasis on health through a healthy lifestyle is seen in the job requirements for the "acute care physician" (which is the closest they come to being a DiseaseCare system):
    "An AC Wellness acute care physician is cognizant of urgent and acute conditions that the a technology company workforce would experience, such as athletic injury, allergic reactions, repetitive stress injury, infections, and exacerbation of chronic disease."
    ...  Please note the order of the acute conditions they list:  it starts with "athletic injury" rather than our leading diseases of heart disease, cancer and diabetes. 
    edited February 27 mac_doglolliver
  • Reply 6 of 22
    What the heck is “compassionate” care? As opposed to what?
    philboogie
  • Reply 7 of 22
    I am all for competition.  I would however hesitate to have my primary care physician tied to my company.  If this is intended more as an urgent care setup, that's awesome.  But anything more gets dicey, as what happens if you quit or are fired?  Do you still have access to your primary care physician?  
  • Reply 8 of 22
    What the heck is “compassionate” care? As opposed to what?
    Many healthcare professionals are (properly) oriented towards technical aspects of healthcare -- a radiologist or surgeon is an example.   Their proficiency is in the technical areas of healthcare rather than the interpersonal side....

    It doesn't mean that they are indifferent to the patient, rather that they care for the patient through their technical specialties...

    Essentially:  You want a surgeon to be proficient with a knife rather than being all warm and fuzzy..
    edited February 27
  • Reply 9 of 22
    airnerd said:
    I am all for competition.  I would however hesitate to have my primary care physician tied to my company.  If this is intended more as an urgent care setup, that's awesome.  But anything more gets dicey, as what happens if you quit or are fired?  Do you still have access to your primary care physician?  
    You raise an excellent point!
    Historically though, this is how it has been in industrial America:  the mine or steel company provided for the community and the health of its employees.  (Which is not to say that was a great model!)

    But too, in this case, Apple may be using this to dip their toes into the health care waters.  And, this could be used as a model program to be propagated throughout the nation.

    And, for an Apple employee, because this effort focuses on health promotion rather than disease treatment, this could be an opportunity to set the stage in order to change their life for the better --  and have positive ramifications for the rest of of their post-Apple lives...
    airnerdlolliver
  • Reply 10 of 22
    The faster the ACA falls apart and market-based competition is everywhere the faster we’ll see real innovation and automation taking over in healthcare. The systems in place today are completely (and needlessly) archaic.
    edited February 27 airnerd
  • Reply 11 of 22
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,735member
    airnerd said:
    I am all for competition.  I would however hesitate to have my primary care physician tied to my company.  If this is intended more as an urgent care setup, that's awesome.  But anything more gets dicey, as what happens if you quit or are fired?  Do you still have access to your primary care physician?  
    Before "primary care", there is actually preventing yourself from actually needing "primary care" (sic).

    Most people in good health, which in a normal society should be most people under 40, need more counseling type help than actual hard core medical health.

    Most metabolic happen without any doctors being near you until its too late already.
  • Reply 12 of 22
    Here is the problem:
    On New Year's Day a family member took a Toddler to the ER fearing a dislocated Elbow that actually turned out to be a condition called Nursemaid's Elbow. Proper treatment would be an elbow xray (well under $100) and reduction would involve the external rotation of the arm (similar to anatomic position- palms forward).

    The bill arrived recently and it is almost $3,000.

    This is thievery- plain and simple.
    lolliver
  • Reply 13 of 22
    Here is the problem:
    On New Year's Day a family member took a Toddler to the ER fearing a dislocated Elbow that actually turned out to be a condition called Nursemaid's Elbow. Proper treatment would be an elbow xray (well under $100) and reduction would involve the external rotation of the arm (similar to anatomic position- palms forward).

    The bill arrived recently and it is almost $3,000.

    This is thievery- plain and simple.
    Was admitted to a hospital for an emergency recently. Spent maybe 3-4 hours there and got a bill for under $15,000. With insurance, paid 1/10th of that, but still completely outrageous.
    edited February 27
  • Reply 14 of 22
    The faster the ACA falls apart and market-based competition is everywhere the faster we’ll see real innovation and automation taking over in healthcare. The systems in place today are completely (and needlessly) archaic.
    Yes, the systems today ARE archaic.   But that has nothing to do with the ACA -- which corrected many of the most sever deficiencies of the system -- such as prohibiting insurers from blocking 50 million Americans from receiving healthcare in order to improve their profits.
    ... Save your propaganda for your right wing propaganda sites...
    edited February 27 singularitylolliver
  • Reply 15 of 22
    Here is the problem:
    On New Year's Day a family member took a Toddler to the ER fearing a dislocated Elbow that actually turned out to be a condition called Nursemaid's Elbow. Proper treatment would be an elbow xray (well under $100) and reduction would involve the external rotation of the arm (similar to anatomic position- palms forward).

    The bill arrived recently and it is almost $3,000.

    This is thievery- plain and simple.
    The ER is staffed and equipped to handle everything from a cold to bullet wounds, heart attacks and limbs lost in auto accidents.

    We are told over and over and over to not go to the ER except in emergency situations.
    A dislocated elbow is not an acute or emergency condition.
    ... So, who's fault that?   Is the fault with the ER for charging premium prices for immediate, no wait, premium care?  Or the family who, instead of making an appointment with a health care professional chose to short circuit the process and just drive to the ER?

    And, don't get me wrong!   I am a huge critic of how our health care system milks the nation in its search for profit.   In fact, in the healthcare system (run by large organizations) profit always comes before health.   But, at the same time, we individuals have to take responsibility and act responsibly ourselves.  Its the real reason behind high copays -- to give patients skin in the game rather than going for the most expensive care knowing that their insurance will pay for it. 
  • Reply 16 of 22
    NemWanNemWan Posts: 105member
    The faster the ACA falls apart and market-based competition is everywhere the faster we’ll see real innovation and automation taking over in healthcare. The systems in place today are completely (and needlessly) archaic.
    So, like before the ACA?

    I'm curious if Apple would have these AC Wellness places in other countries or if they'd be non-viably redundant to the more available and affordable health systems existing elsewhere besides the U.S.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 17 of 22
    The faster the ACA falls apart and market-based competition is everywhere the faster we’ll see real innovation and automation taking over in healthcare. The systems in place today are completely (and needlessly) archaic.
    Yes, the systems today ARE archaic.   But that has nothing to do with the ACA -- which corrected many of the most sever deficiencies of the system -- such as blocking 50 million Americans from receiving healthcare.
    ... Save your propaganda for your right wing propaganda sites...
    Lol. A bit of the pot calling the kettle black there, eh? How about you save your left wing propaganda for left wing propaganda sites. Moving on..

    The ACA took a broken, corrupt system, patched a couple (out of hundreds) of holes, slapped a mandate on it, and declared victory. It's been a disaster, just like the system before it, except more cemented in.

    The main issues with healthcare is not mandate vs free market. Both rely on an inefficient and corrupt system. The core issues need to be fixed before we can decide which system provides the best care (free market vs socialized).

    IMO, as a physician, the best solution would incorporate both principals, with an emphasis on very ready access to and incentives to engage in primary prevention and health maintenance. In addition, a strong emphasis on early life mental health screening and intervention, as we know that adverse childhood experiences are a significant contributor to later life health issues including heart disease, diabetes, other inflammatory/stress-induced diseases, DNA decomposition, etc. If anyone is interested in learning more, look into the ACE studies (Adverse Childhood Experience).
  • Reply 18 of 22
    The faster the ACA falls apart and market-based competition is everywhere the faster we’ll see real innovation and automation taking over in healthcare. The systems in place today are completely (and needlessly) archaic.
    Yes, the systems today ARE archaic.   But that has nothing to do with the ACA -- which corrected many of the most sever deficiencies of the system -- such as blocking 50 million Americans from receiving healthcare.
    ... Save your propaganda for your right wing propaganda sites...
    Lol. A bit of the pot calling the kettle black there, eh? How about you save your left wing propaganda for left wing propaganda sites. Moving on..

    The ACA took a broken, corrupt system, patched a couple (out of hundreds) of holes, slapped a mandate on it, and declared victory. It's been a disaster, just like the system before it, except more cemented in.

    The main issues with healthcare is not mandate vs free market. Both rely on an inefficient and corrupt system. The core issues need to be fixed before we can decide which system provides the best care (free market vs socialized).

    IMO, as a physician, the best solution would incorporate both principals, with an emphasis on very ready access to and incentives to engage in primary prevention and health maintenance. In addition, a strong emphasis on early life mental health screening and intervention, as we know that adverse childhood experiences are a significant contributor to later life health issues including heart disease, diabetes, other inflammatory/stress-induced diseases, DNA decomposition, etc. If anyone is interested in learning more, look into the ACE studies (Adverse Childhood Experience).
    So I'm spreading left wing propaganda? 
    Not at all.   Just refuting the right wing jihadists using ai to spread their propaganda...

    By the way, you should maybe stick to medicine rather than politics.   Hopefully you're better at it.
    edited February 27
  • Reply 19 of 22
    NemWan said:
    The faster the ACA falls apart and market-based competition is everywhere the faster we’ll see real innovation and automation taking over in healthcare. The systems in place today are completely (and needlessly) archaic.
    So, like before the ACA?

    I'm curious if Apple would have these AC Wellness places in other countries or if they'd be non-viably redundant to the more available and affordable health systems existing elsewhere besides the U.S.
    Well, just like Amazon is doing for their employees, this is Apple creating an employee specific solution. There’s really no evidence (yet) that either company is interested in offering this to the wider public. After cross state lines competition is opened by the Federal government, things will really start heading in the right direction.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2018/01/30/amazon-berkshire-hathaway-and-jpmorgan-chase-to-partner-on-us-employee-health-care.html
  • Reply 20 of 22
    airnerd said:
    I am all for competition.  I would however hesitate to have my primary care physician tied to my company.  If this is intended more as an urgent care setup, that's awesome.  But anything more gets dicey, as what happens if you quit or are fired?  Do you still have access to your primary care physician?  
    You raise an excellent point!
    Historically though, this is how it has been in industrial America:  the mine or steel company provided for the community and the health of its employees.  (Which is not to say that was a great model!)

    But too, in this case, Apple may be using this to dip their toes into the health care waters.  And, this could be used as a model program to be propagated throughout the nation.

    And, for an Apple employee, because this effort focuses on health promotion rather than disease treatment, this could be an opportunity to set the stage in order to change their life for the better --  and have positive ramifications for the rest of of their post-Apple lives...
    It's funny I was thinking of that song "sold my soul to the company store" when I was reading this story.  
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