Unforeseen Challenges

Adopting Wearable Health Data Tracking Devices to Reduce Health Insurance Costs in Organizations
  • Mads Christophersen
  • Peter Mørck
  • Tue Odd LanghoffEmail author
  • Pernille Bjørn
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9177)


Wearable health-tracking devices are being adopted by American self-insured companies to combat rising health insurance costs. The key motivation is to discourage employees’ unhealthy behavior through monitoring their data. While wearable health-tracking devices might improve users awareness about personal health, we argue that the introduction of such devices in organizational settings also risk introducing unforeseen challenges. In this paper we unpack the unforeseen challenges and argue that wearable health-tracking devices in organizational settings risk disciplining employees, by tempting or penalizing them financially. Further, health concerns are reduced to numbers through wearable health-tracking devices providing surveillance of bodies, impacting people’s lives. We stress how important it is that designers and researchers find ways to address these challenges in order to avoid future abuse of personal health data collected from wearable health-data tracking devices.


Wearable Health-Tracking devices Health data Health insurance Differentiated pricing Wellness programs Personal healthcare records Privacy Surveillance Disciplining Health as numbers 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mads Christophersen
    • 1
  • Peter Mørck
    • 1
  • Tue Odd Langhoff
    • 1
    Email author
  • Pernille Bjørn
    • 1
  1. 1.IT-University of CopenhagenCopenhagenDenmark

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