Special Report: Researchers predict that healthcare spending will hit $7.6 trillion in the US alone by 2025. Here is how one ASX tech company is angling for a slice of that pie.

The frightening downside of advances in healthcare over recent decades has been the rising  medical cost and inflation has been outstripping gross domestic product (GDP) growth for more than half a century.

Some experts believe one way to bring those costs down is to look to the technology sector for solutions that can deliver real time diagnostics outside of the doctor’s office. According to global consulting firm McKinsey, tech-enabled solutions could create up to $588 billion in annual value by 2025 in the US alone, out of the $7.6 trillion forecast to be spent on healthcare that year.

And that’s where Australian-based, globally focused tech company MyFiziq (ASX: MYQ) plans to make its mark with its $5m insurance and medical joint venture, Body Composition Technologies (BCT).

MyFiziq and BCT’s move into the medical and insurance market began nearly two years ago after signing a $5m joint venture agreement with Gold Quay Capital, a Singapore-based financial services company which was looking to fund the development of a tool that would help insurance companies efficiently track the health of their policyholders.

In addition, MyFiziq has completed a  proof of concept with global insurer Prudential, and is now working with a number of global organisations in the medical and insurance sector, with a view to providing a predictive health outcomes and dynamic underwriting solutions, at an affordable rate: with pricing as low as US$4.99 to commence engagement for policy holders.

But first, the tech

MyFiziq created a revolutionary technology that can accurately capture body measurements , for a range of use cases from personal fitness to the insurance and apparel sectors.

Individuals take images of themselves on their mobile phone, which are then mapped into personalised 3D models using a proprietary machine learning algorithm with over 64,000 data points. What this gets you are body measurements and composition of the individual including body circumference measurements (chest, waist, hips and thighs) and body composition & (total body fat percentage).

The company has four key markets, all with a swathe of established opportunities in place: corporate wellness, apparel, health and fitness as well as medical and insurance in its joint venture, BCT.

The lay of the land

Governments and the general populous are beginning to understand mortality and the need to give the community an assessment tool in the privacy of their own home. A tool that can identify the markers for chronic illnesses such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity.

The need for an early screening application on a mobile phone has long been required and MyFiziq is just that application.

Data from MyFiziq’s patented technology can be used to identify segments of the population that require more targeted attention. This would allow governments and healthcare providers to lower the cost of treatments through early intervention and save billions of dollars of wasted capital.

MyFiziq to the rescue

To aid in tackling the rise in both astronomical healthcare costs, as well as the rise in preventable chronic diseases, MyFiziq through its joint venture partner BCT, is now offering medical and insurance organisations around the world a product offering that enables them to either augment the  technology into their existing applications and platform, or to make white-labelled versions of the technology as a bespoke solution.

The joint venture is well-positioned to provide the healthcare market with accessible solutions that increase efficiency, promote consumer loyalty, reduce costs and most importantly, identify chronic disease risks with early detection of the known markers.

The MyFiziq tech has the added advantage of having the consumer at its heart, from the very beginning of the body mapping process through to integration with a variety of systems not only in healthcare but also in the health, fitness, corporate wellness and apparel markets.

It forms part of a global trend towards personalised medicine, which is about tailoring medical practices, treatments and care to a specific individual rather than applying a broad brush strategy that does not take into account a patient’s unique circumstances and genetic makeup.

With the aforementioned rapidly rising healthcare costs, a solution such as MyFiziq not only empowers patients and consumers to proactively look after their own health, it also reduces the burden on a healthcare system that is already bursting at the seams.

This story was developed in collaboration with MyFiziq, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.
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